7 questions with…Kelly Calvanico


Director of Continuing Legal Education Kelly Calvanico has the privilege of meeting a lot of great people in her work. Reading about her unique first job, plethora of interests, and knack for reaching out to other departments, it’s a privilege to get to know Kelly, too!

1) What was your first job?
My first job was working at a horse farm, trading work time for riding time. I would arrive at 5:30am and bring the 20 school horses in from the field. We would feed them and tack them for their lessons. Because the school horses were used all day by novice riders, we would ride each horse following a lesson to train the bad habits out of them. I also got paid on the side by the owners of horses that were boarding at the farm to ride their horses each day. I usually worked a 13 hour day. At the end of each day, I would have earned one hour of free riding time. My favorite part of the job was eating lunch in a treehouse in the middle of the horse field. The horses would snuggle up in hopes of being treated with a spare apple or carrot.

2) Which part of your job at Chicago-Kent do you most enjoy?
As the Director of Continuing Legal Education, I most enjoy having the opportunity to learn something new each day. At each of our conferences, you will find me scribbling notes at the back of the room as I listen to our many speakers. I also love having the opportunity to meet so many talented attorneys. It takes hundreds of speakers and advisory board members to make our programs work, and I have really enjoyed getting to know them.

3) Is there a work-related accomplishment you’re particularly proud of?
Over the last year-and-a-half, I have tried to get our department more involved with other departments in the law school and at IIT. We have worked with Career Services to encourage students to volunteer at our events. We would like to think that we are the best kept career development secret at Kent. Our conferences bring in hundreds of prospective employers and we would love to see more students take advantage of our programming.

4) Any hidden talents?
I am a Jack of All Trades and a Master of None. I have played softball, tennis and soccer. I swam and dove — and even participated in synchronised swimming. I prefer eating to cooking (but will put in some effort in the kitchen to avoid eating ramen noodles every night). I am a voracious reader, but mostly listen to books now because my spare time is consumed by my six year old son. My current sports are rock climbing and pilates. I am considering trying boxing next.

5) Favorite Chicago (or Chicago-area) restaurant?
The Little Goat — the perfect combination of foodie-friendly cuisine and a casual, diner-like atmosphere.

6) Favorite travel spot?
If I have to pick only one, Rome, Italy. If I could have a three-way tie, Italy, Alaska and Belize.

7) Favorite movie, and why?
A Thousand Clowns (1965) starring Jason Robards as an off beat comedy writer who is forced to tone down his eccentricities to gain custody of his nephew. His true spirit cannot be contained – and his non-conformist ways keep appearing throughout. The film delivers a real burst of energy to attendees. When it was released in the 60’s, moviegoers made the news when they exited the movie shouting lines from the movie and waking their neighbors up to play midnight volleyball.

Becky Ammerman

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