It was the NJ STARS program that drew Jilian McLeer to OCC.
“I knew early on, in my senior year at Toms River High School South, that I had an interest in ultimately attending law school. Therefore, attending my first and second years of college with minimal to no student loans was a very attractive option knowing how much law school costs.”
She soon became a Viking, Class of 2009. “I had a wonderful experience as an OCC student,” McLeer stated. “I felt that all of my professors treated me as a valued student and not just a ‘number,’ which was what many of my friends at larger universities experienced. I particularly enjoyed the many student life opportunities and events that made my experience even more memorable. I earned my liberal arts degree while I was at OCC. I purposefully chose a more general major as it made transferring my credits to a four-year school easier.”
“To this day,” she added, “I reflect on the wonderful experiences I had with Professor Marilyn Kralik and the Honors Program, and Professor Bill Rickert and Phi Theta Kappa. Both of these professors impacted me tremendously, not only as a student and a scholar, but also as a person.”
After earning her associate degree, McLeer enrolled at The College of New Jersey for her junior and senior years, and graduated with a Business Administration degree with a concentration in Marketing. She then entered law school at Rutgers Law School-Camden, receiving her law degree in 2014.
“I am currently employed as an associate attorney at King, Kitrick, Jackson & McWeeney, LLC, in Manasquan, New Jersey,” said McLeer. “I practice insurance defense litigation and residential and commercial land zoning. I pursued my career in law because I found it to be intellectually challenging and personally fulfilling. I truly feel that I’m making a positive difference in people’s lives every day through my work.”
Outside of her law career, McLeer, who lives a half mile from the beach in Asbury Park, NJ, with her fiancé, is either “at the beach or riding my bike anywhere and everywhere near the shore” during the warmer months. “I also enjoy cooking, reading for pleasure, and I’ve recently gotten really into golfing,” she noted.
McLeer would likely sign an affidavit acknowledging the advantages of OCC. “I would wholeheartedly recommend OCC to others,” she remarked. “OCC provides a great economical choice for students, and it is also a great stepping stone to becoming accustomed to life at a senior college or university.”
“On my first day at OCC, I was apprehensive about being in a new school with many fellow classmates who were much older than me. On the day of graduation, I was a confident, happy person ready to begin my junior year at TCNJ.” – JKH
Favorite spot on campus: The Student Center and the Planetarium!
Favorite class at OCC: Art History with Professor Marilyn Kralik
OCC in three words: Affordable, excellent, memorable