Elizabeth Lynne Cheney was born on July 28, 1966, in Madison, Wisconsin, the elder of two daughters of former Vice President Dick Cheney and former Second Lady Lynne Cheney (née Vincent). At the time of her birth, her parents were studying at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Her younger sister, Mary Cheney, was also born in Madison. Cheney attended part of sixth and seventh grade in Casper, Wyoming, while her father campaigned for Congress. The family split time between Casper and Washington, D. C. , in the 1970s through the 1980s following her father's election to Congress. Cheney graduated from McLean High School (1984), where she was a cheerleader. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree (BA) from Colorado College, her mother's alma mater, where she wrote her senior thesis, "The Evolution of Presidential War Powers" (1988). She received her J. D. degree from the University of Chicago Law School (1996), having also taken courses in Middle Eastern history at the Oriental Institute.