Zach Pohlman, '18, Economics, Philosophy, Theology & Religious Studies

Zach and Julia Pohlman in front of the golden dome at Notre Dame

Zach Pohlman came to Kansas City from Omaha, Nebraska, and if he has his way the Rockhurst triple major and Notre Dame Law student will eventually return to his hometown as a practicing lawyer or law professor.

But he’s certainly not alone in making this “full circle” back to Omaha.

Pohlman married his high school sweetheart, Julia, who joined him at Rockhurst. Julia graduated from RU’s occupational therapy program while Zach triple majored in economics, philosophy, and theology & religious studies.

The two Rockhurst alums recently welcomed their first child, Quinten Thomas. 

The Pohlmans are guided by their faith, which was a major reason Zach decided to attend both Rockhurst and Notre Dame.

“I chose Rockhurst because I wanted to go to a Catholic university where I could not only get a great education but grow in my faith,” he said. “Rockhurst proved to be a place where I was able to do both!”

Zach has wanted to be a lawyer since he was in eighth grade. In fact, he says he picked St. Thomas More, the patron saint of lawyers, to be his confirmation saint.

Later, as a Catholic and a new Rockhurst graduate, he felt he couldn’t pass up the opportunity to attend Notre Dame.

“I decided to attend Notre Dame Law School for the same reason I decided to go to Rockhurst,” he said. “It's a great school, and it's a place where I could focus on growing in my faith.”

Pohlman said Rockhurst's economics and humanities classes helped prepare him for Notre Dame because he learned to think differently.

“From the analytical thinking I used in my economics classes to the natural law I learned in my philosophy classes to the difficult texts I navigated in my theology classes, Rockhurst helped prepare me to read and think and write in the way that law school requires,” he said. “In addition, my time in Student Senate prepared me to think on my feet and debate in a respectful way – skills necessary to do well in law school.”

Pohlman will put those skills to use beyond Notre Dame when he works for the next two years as a judicial law clerk, first for Judge Steven Colloton on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, then for Justice Jonathan Papik on the Nebraska Supreme Court.

If things go as planned, that will then complete his journey full circle back to Omaha.

“Following my clerkships, I plan to practice law in my hometown,” he said. “Eventually, I'd like to become a law professor.”

However, just as learning to think through a variety of perspectives enhances academics, faith and home life complete a person who’s successful in their profession. Zach has plans there, too. 

“And, of course,” he said, “I love being a dad to Quinten and look forward to being a dad to any other children God blesses Julia and me with.” 

Later, Zach shared that Quinten will be welcoming a brother or sister to the family in the next few months.