After graduating from Brandeis University and the St. Mary’s University School of Law, Rivas started her legal career in a clinical fellowship program at her law school alma mater. There, in addition to practicing civil litigation, she practiced implementing a clinical pedagogy through teaching and supervising law students in the clinical program. During her fellowship, she was also charged with coordinating the Center for Legal and Social Justice's Pro Bono Program and Border Outreach Program.
Rivas has served as the Associate Director of the Externship Program since the program’s formal launch in 2011. She engages students each semester in her externship "bootcamp" to prepare them for their semester-long experiential learning course. Additionally, she conducts employer and community outreach to expand the opportunities for students in the program.
Rivas is the primary contact and support system for the supervising attorneys in the program. She works with them individually and in larger groups in bi-annual workshops for CLE credit focused on supervisor effectiveness, ethics and supervision issues. She coordinates with the program director, Professor Albert Kauffman, other faculty members, and the Office of Career Services to ensure the program's continued growth and success.
Her love of teaching and passion for educational issues stems from her three years as a Teach For America Corps member teaching middle school in the Rio Grande Valley. She currently serves as a board member for Teach For America San Antonio and as a Big Sister mentor in Big Brothers Big Sisters of San Antonio.
Navigating Crosscurrents: Challenges and Opportunities in Partnerships between Career Services and Externship Departments, Co-Presenter, NALP Annual Educational Conference, Chicago, Illinois, April 29, 2015
Supervising the Millennial Generation: The Good, The Bad, and The Hopeful, Co-Presenter, Practice Credit Program Supervisor CLE, April 10, 2015
Breaking it down: Effective Assignments, Discussion and Exercises, Co-Presenter, Fall 2014 Practice Credit Program Supervisor CLE
What Makes a Good Mentor: Effective and Consistent Feedback, Discussion and Exercises, Co-Presenter, Spring 2014, Practice Credit Program Supervisor CLE
Advertising and Selection Tips, Assignments: Long Term, Short Term and Routine, Co-Presenter, Fall 2013, Practice Credit Program Supervisor CLE
Writing Feedback, Optimal Observations, and Five Minute Supervising Tips, Co-Presenter, Spring 2013 Practice Credit Program Supervisor CLE
Tips for Mental Health Professionals Regarding Subpoenas, Court Testimony and Legal Liability, March 2012, Guest Speaker, St. Mary’s University Department of Counseling and Human Services
Violence on the Border, Perseverance and Hope: Providing Help along the Border Guest Speaker, St. Mary’s University President’s Peace Commission Panel, Fall 2010