Nuclear Submarine Expert's Big Change on the Way to Harvard Law School

By William Vogeler, Esq. on November 12, 2018 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Eve L. Howe is not your typical law student.

The Harvard law student is a military veteran and expert in nuclear submarines. As a Navy engineer, she worked on fluid systems that cool the nuclear reactors powering submarines.

After completing her service, she felt inspired to go to law school. It was part of a bigger life change, however, because until then she was a man.

An Awakening

Howe was born a male, but realized she was transgender. It came to her in a dream.

"I can't describe how happy it made me to see myself that way," she told The Harvard Gazette. "I woke up from the dream and decided I had to do a lot of research, which I did, and I thought, 'This is actually me.'"

During a year between the military and law school, Howe helped LGBTQ youth and adults at Casa Ruby in Washington, D.C. She worked as an events manager organizing fundraising and other affairs.

Now as a first-year law student, she volunteers with programs to help homeless youth and sex workers. She said "a lot of trans people have to do survival sex work" because they can't get other jobs.

Work/Life Balance

Howe said law school keeps her busy, but her volunteer work is making it harder.

"I feel like I'm stressing out more over the fact I've taken on so much extracurricular responsibility," she says.

Otherwise, she says military life was harder than law school life. That happens when you work on nuclear submarines.

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