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Haley Taylor Schlitz sworn in as attorney at just 21 after becoming youngest Black graduate of SMU law school

Haley Taylor Schlitz has become one of the youngest Black attorneys to be sworn into the Minnesota State Bar Association. This follows her remarkable feat of passing the Minnesota bar test and obtaining her license to practice law in the North Star State.

In 2022, she became the youngest Black student to graduate from Southern Methodist University’s Dedman School of Law, having previously been accepted into nine law schools at the age of 16. Two years after graduating, Taylor Schlitz began teaching U.S. History to fifth graders at IDEA Edgecliff, a K-9 public school in Fort Worth, Texas.

The 21-year-old told ‘Good Morning America’, “I did this because I believe it is essential that Gen Z, especially Black Gen Z, give back to our communities and serve as teachers in our schools if possible. I hope that by doing this, my students were excited that I was taking my Bar oath yesterday, that I can help inspire my students to pursue their wildest dreams.”

The pacesetter also started Trailblazers Forum: Youth Civic Engagement, a community civic education program in the Dallas-Fort Worth region that equips 12 to 16-year-olds with the tools to advocate for themselves and their communities effectively while enhancing their literacy skills, its website says.

Still, Taylor Schlitz clarified that the law will always be her priority as she is working toward getting more bar licenses. Taylor Schlitz received her Juris Doctor two years ago, and at the time, her professors, including Professor Jennifer Collins, told GMA that they believed she would succeed.

“We are incredibly proud of Haley and all she has accomplished during her time at SMU Law School. We know she is going to make a difference in this world, and we can’t wait to see all the wonderful places her career will take her,” the then-SMU Dedman School of Law professor expressed.

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