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Meet Pro Baseball Player, UC Law Alumni, and Court Clerk Matt Singer ‘08

Matt Singer '08Professional baseball player and class of 2008 graduate Matt Singer has a strong connection to Cincinnati. Born and reared here, he graduated from Purcell Marian High School, before becoming a UC student and baseball standout. An outfield and team captain on the university’s team, he went on to play professional baseball after he graduated, beginning with the New York Yankees franchise. Although the idea of attending law school was in the back of his mind, Singer focused on his baseball career after graduating from UC, playing in minor leagues for five seasons.  “Law school was my backup plan,” he joked. “When my baseball career had gone as far as it could, law school was the next best thing.”  

He returned to Cincinnati to attend the College of Law in 2005.  During his first summer, Singer interned with the Ohio Justice and Policy Center in Cincinnati, getting a taste of public interest work.  After his 2L year, he worked as a summer associate for Jones Day in Chicago. While at UC Law, Singer served as editor-in-chief of UC’s Law Review and articles editor of the Human Rights Quarterly. He also worked as a research assistant for Professor Marianna Bettman.

After graduating in 2008, Singer returned to Jones Day in Chicago, enhancing his agency experience. After a year, however, he began a judicial clerkship, clerking for the Honorable Judge Philip P. Simon in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Indiana in Hammond, Indiana.  “I was attracted to the opportunity to work on a lot of different aspects of the law, on both the civil and criminal sides,” said Singer.  “I also know it would give me the chance to see a variety of legal practitioners and compare their styles.”  Clerking also appealed to him because it would allow him to continue to improve his research and writing skills. Moreover, he recognized that experience as a judicial clerk could open many opportunities down the road and would be beneficial to him throughout his career. But perhaps most important, joked Singer, is that “Hammond, Indiana is not far from Chicago, so we didn’t have to move from our apartment, which is blocks away from Wrigley Field!” 

Working as a Clerk

Currently in the first year of a two year clerkship, Singer said that he has found the experience very rewarding and has particularly enjoyed working on criminal trials. “I’ve been very impressed with the attorneys that have come before the court,” he said, “especially their understanding and control of the applicable law, their ability to think on their feet, act quickly, and be able to get across complex and nuanced areas of law to a jury.”  Singer also noted that when he began his clerkship, Judge Simon was sitting by designation on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. So while his clerkship is with a district court, he has been able to spend a substantial amount of time working on appellate matters, which he very much enjoys.

As of now, Singer is unsure of his plans following the completion of his clerkship. Based on his experience working on matters before the Seventh Circuit, he has considered applying for a clerkship with a federal appellate court judge. Also, given his affinity for criminal law, Singer is interested in working as a federal prosecutor. “My experience at Jones Day was also very positive,” he said, “and I would be fortunate to have the opportunity to return there. At this point I want to get as much experience, in as many different areas of the law, as possible. I’m fortunate because I have another year and a half before my clerkship is over. There’s plenty of time to figure out my next step!”

In his free time, Singer enjoys being active, playing basketball, and going on trips with his wife Andrea. He returns to Cincinnati often to visit family and friends and could see himself moving back to the Queen City at some point. This is especially true since he and his wife recently became parents to Elijah Michael a few weeks ago. Singer confesses his new role as parent has occupied much of his free time lately, which “is the best job ever.”