Pro Bono Program Student Newsletter

Pro Bono Program Student Newsletter: Monday, March 21, 2011

About the Pro Bono Newsletter

The Office of Public Service Programs is here to serve students who are pursuing a career in public interest law and provide opportunities for all students to engage in the School of Law's tradition of public service. Look out for the Public Service Newsletter each Monday for information about public service career opportunities, events, resources, news, and more. View past newsletters.

Events at UNC Law

Race and the Law: Theory and Practice
Monday, March 21, 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m., 5046

As civil rights attorneys, the Center for Civil Rights hears from both critics and allies that an emphasis only on integration is not always the communities' priority, or not the best strategic choice. Is this a step backwards to the pre-Brown period of "separate but equal," or a recognition of the need for new strategies where traditional civil rights approaches have advanced the cause as far as the law or society will accept

Join the UNC Center for Civil Rights, Education Law and Policy Society, and the Office of Public Service Programs as Dean John Charles (Jack) Boger, Professor Charles E. Daye, Assistant Professor Catherine Y. Kim, and Visiting Associate Professor Derek W. Black engage in the first of three honest and compelling conversations that respond to the questions of race, class and the law.

  • Is neighborhood and school integration the primary goal of civil rights law?
  • If our goal remains integration, with the current composition of the courts, does a legal focus on equity makes more sense as a legal strategy(Leandro v. Title 6)?
  • Is integration itself merely a necessary means to equity, or does the law continue to recognize integration as an affirmative value;
  • Does integration and diversity necessarily encourage assimilation of people of color and immigrant communities;
  • Does the current civil rights regime provide channels for addressing issues of discrimination within a racially diverse school (like the school to prison pipeline, lack of assistance to students in need of an IEP, or steering children of color into remedial classes), or is it limited to integrating a building?

Civil rights law and legal issues revolving around race and discrimination are both vibrant and legally challenging! Join our esteemed guests as they deconstruct the theory and practice of civil rights law.

Critical Perspectives Roundtable
Tuesday, March 22, 4:30 p.m., Boardroom

Discussion of critical perspectives with respect to race, gender, and sexuality and the law, as well as OUR legal education with Professors, Lau, Weissman, and Brophy. RSVP at RSVP is required. This event is part of Progressive Week, sponsored by the National Lawyer's Guild.

Pauli Murray's "To Buy the Sun"
Tuesday, March 22, 7:00 p.m., Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History

Join the Pauli Murray Project at the Duke Human Rights Center and Hidden Voices as they commemorate the 100th anniversary of Pauli Murray's birth with a new play that explores the life and legacy of one of North Carolina's own. Admission is free. Directions to the Sonja Haynes Stone Center can be found at

VDAY 2011: Speaking Out Against Violence
Wednesday, March 23, 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m., Law School Courtyard

VDAY 2011 is a series of monologues performed by professors and students to highlight the silenced experiences of survivors of sexual, physical, and emotional violence co-sponsored through collaboration of several student organizations at the Law School. For more information about VDAY, visit

(Un)documented: Workers, Wage Theft, and Remedies
Wednesday, March 23, 5:30 p.m., 4085

Join the Immigration Law Association for a discussion with: Professor Jarod Gonzalez, application of employment laws to documented and undocumented workers; Mary Lee Hall, attorney at Legal Aid's Farmworker Unit to discuss the guestworker program and human trafficking in labor; Professor Dick Reavis of NC State University on his recent book on life as a day laborer. Free dinner from Chipotle.

"Love Lived on Death Row" Screening
Wednesday, March 23, 6:30 p.m., 5046

LOVE LIVED ON DEATH ROW tells the powerful story of the Syrian children, torn apart by tragedy after their father was sentenced to death in Charlotte, NC for the murder of their mother. This film portrays their healing process when confronted with issues of domestic violence and capital punishment. UNC Law Professor Deborah Weissman will introduce the film with a discussion on issues of domestic violence. After the screening, we will have Q&A and discussion with filmmaker Linda Booker. Sponsored by the UNC Law Death Penalty Project, DVAP, and NLG.

UNC Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity: A North Carolina Summit: Progress and Economic Justice in a Time of Crisis
Monday, March 28, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., George Watts Hill Alumni Center, UNC Campus

For most of the last decade, poverty rose in North Carolina - even as the economy grew. Then in 2008, with the onslaught of massive recession, the wheels came off. Poverty rates soared. More than one in six Tar Heels now live in poverty. The numbers are worse for persons of color. And, stunningly, almost a quarter of our kids are poor.

Unemployment has rocked much of the state, leading to one of the highest losses of health care coverage in the nation. In addition, the past two years have seen dramatic reductions in social services, further threatening the security, dignity and opportunity of poor and working families in North Carolina. We now face a massive state budget deficit that will likely be narrowed by fiscal decisions that place the greatest burdens on the most vulnerable. These are, in short, emergency times for poor and working people in North Carolina.

The UNC Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity will convene a summit in Chapel Hill on March 28 to explore the dramatic challenges faced by low income North Carolinians and the crucial steps that must be taken, in the months ahead, to address them. We hope that North Carolinians from all walks of life will join us.

Speakers will include:

  • Rev. Dr. William Barber, President, NC NAACP (Keynote address)
  • Andrea Bazan, President, Triangle Community Foundation
  • Anita Brown-Graham, Director, Institute for Emerging Issues, NC State
  • Angela Bryant, Rep. District 7, NC House of Representatives
  • William A. "Sandy" Darity, Professor of African-American Studies and Economics, Duke
  • Chris Fitzsimon, Executive Director, NC Policy Watch
  • William C. "Bill" Friday, President Emeritus, UNC
  • Ferrel Guillory, Director, UNC Program on Public Life
  • Bob Hall, Executive Director, Democracy North Carolina
  • Jarvis Hall, Professor of Political Science, Director of Institute for Civic Engagement and Social Change, NC Central; Chair, Political Action Committee, NC NAACP
  • George Hausen, Executive Director, Legal Aid of North Carolina
  • James H. Johnson, Jr., Director, Urban Investment Strategies Center, Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise, Kenan Distinguished Professor, Kenan-Flagler Business School, UNC
  • Michael D. Jones, Edmund J. Safra Center, Harvard
  • Melinda Lawrence, Executive Director, NC Justice Center
  • Gene Nichol, Director, Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity, UNC
  • Timothy Tyson, Adjunct Professor of American Studies, UNC; Senior Research Scholar, Center for Documentary Studies, Duke; author of Blood Done Sign My Name
  • Leslie J. Winner, Executive Director, Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation

A full conference agenda will soon be available. Registration is $10 but hardship waivers are available. Register online.

"The Other Latino@: Writing Against a Singular Cultural Identity"
Monday, March 28, 6:00 p.m., Institute for Arts & Humanities, University Room of Hyde Hall, UNC campus

The UNC Latina/o Cultures Speakers Series of the UNC Latina/o Studies Program presents "The Other Latin@: Writing Against a Singular Cultural Identity" by Lorraine M. Lopez from Vanderbilt University.

Lorraine M. Lopez's first book Soy la Avon Lady and Other Stories won the inaugural Miguel Marmol Prize. Her second book Call Me Henri was awarded the Paterson Prize, and her novel The Gifted Gabaldon Sisters was a Borders/Las Comadres Selection. Lopez's Homicide Survivors Picnic and Other Stories was a Finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Prize. She has edited a collection of essays titled An Angle of Vision: Women Writers on Their Poor or Working-Class Roots (University of Michigan Press, 2009). Her forthcoming works include a novel, "The Realm of Hungry Spirits" and an edited collection of essays, "The Other Latin@." Q & A and book-signing to follow.

Sponsored by the UNC Program in Latina/o Studies, the Institute for the Arts & Humanities, and the Carolina Latina/o Collaborative. For directions, visit

Charlotte Law Public Interest Law Society (PILS)/Pro Bono Program Saturday Service Day
Saturday, April 9, 11:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Charlotte School of Law

The Saturday program allows law students from across the state to network and chat about public interest work being performed across the state. The Saturday Service Day will also give free student training for the Beazer Restitution Fund clinics, Charlotte Law's signature service project that may be applicable to Beazer Homes located in your communities! See:

Agenda for the day: enjoy a free lunch, network and hear about law student public interest work from across the state (11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.), receive Beazer Restitution Fund training (1pm to 2pm), participate in a legal service project (Beazer Restitution Fund Clinic) that afternoon from 2 to 4pm, and enjoy a day near the heart of downtown Charlotte!

This Saturday event will be held at the Charlotte School of Law--for directions: To participate, confirm by March 25, 2011 if you can attend. If you have any additional questions, call 704.971.8590 or email

Save the Date!

University of Georgia School of Law Public Interest Weekend
April 1-2, University of Georgia, School of Law, Athens, GA

Join Working in the Public Interest (WIPI) and Equal Justice Foundation (EJF) as we host our annual public interest events. Save the date for this premier public interest event so that you can be in the midst of the greatest students, leading professionals, and experienced faculty who are all excited about public interest.

EJF will kick off the celebration with the EJF Auction the evening of Friday, April 1. The auction raises funds to provide stipends for law students who work in unpaid public interest positions. More information at

The WIPI Conference begins with a keynote address on April 1 before the EJF auction. The conference continues with panels and roundtables on Saturday, April 2. This student run conference has been offered annually since 2005, and seeks to bring together eminent practitioners in their respective fields, students, and faculty to discuss practical approaches to law, which can promote social justice and human rights for all. The conference offers CLE credit and includes roundtables, panel discussions, and a plenary conference. Find more information at

Current Pro Bono Opportunities

Current Pro Bono Projects

Projects are posted on the Pro Bono Board near the mailboxes and are listed online at Students can sign up for projects on the Pro Bono Board or email Lauren Felter at

Pro Bono Board Interest Meeting

An interest meeting for those interested in applying for the 2011-2012 Pro Bono Board will be on Monday, March 21 at noon in 4004. Interviews will take place on March 31. More information about the application and selection process will be available at this meeting.

Summer and Post-Graduate Employment Opportunities

Featured Postings for Summer Opportunities

Check out the the postings frequently in the Job Bank and Resume Collects for summer opportunities in states all across the US. New postings are added weekly! See a few recently added postings below!

Ownership Appalachia

Internship will focus on the development of governance documents for North Carolina cooperative enterprises.

Research & Writing:

  • Survey & summarize selected state cooperative statutes.
  • Review examples of worker cooperative bylaws, identify key points of departure from business corporation.
  • Review examples of LLC operating agreements, compare to key points of cooperative governance documents.
  • Draft sample cooperative governance operating agreement for North Carolina limited liability company.

Client Work:

  • Work with one or more startup worker or farm cooperatives to develop Operating Agreement.

Details: This work can be done in Asheville or Chapel Hill provided you can travel to the mountains periodically. This can be for the entire summer or half-term. Prior experience is not as important as the intern's attitude and interest in social enterprise. Compensation is only available through UNC School of Law summer grant program.

Timetable: Submit your resume and cover letter without delay to Phone interviews will take place on Wednesday, March 23. Student's grant application must be submitted to School of Law by Friday, March 25.

Orange and Chatham Public Defender Office

We are looking for interns to work in both our Orange and Chatham County offices. Interns will gain extensive experience in interviewing clients both in and out of custody, interviewing state and defense witnesses, assisting attorneys in district court, and research/case preparation. Interns will also observe all aspects of district court, including plea negotiations and court proceedings. Certified interns may actively participate in client representation under the supervision of a qualified attorney. In the past certified interns have represented clients in bond motions, plea bargaining, entry of pleas, pre-trial motions, and trials.

Summer Housing

If you are looking for housing this summer, The Association for Legal Career Professionals, also known as NALP, hosts a site for law students who are looking for a summer rental and/or renting their housing for the summer. Start searching at

Check Symplicity regularly for both summer and post-graduation opportunities.

Summer Funding Opportunities

Apply for a Summer Grant from UNC Law

Each year several summer grants are awarded to students who are taking unpaid or low-paying summer public interest jobs. Funding for these grants comes from several sources including CPILO, funds established at the law school by generous donors, and student organizations that raise money for a grant to a student working in a particular interest area.

The deadline for applying for a summer grant is March 25, 2011 and students will be notified after that date. To view and complete the Summer Grant Application visit My Carolina Law, click on the Student Life tab at the top of the page, and select the Summer Grants link. Be sure to check out 10 Tips for Writing a Strong Grant Application. PLEASE NOTE THAT THE DEADLINE IS THIS FRIDAY!

Contact Dean Novinsky or Dorsey Ballard for questions about grants.

Apply for Equal Justice Works Summer Corps 2011

Summer Corps is an AmeriCorps-funded program that in 2011 will provide 700 law students with the opportunity to earn a $1,132 Segal AmeriCorps Education Award for dedicating their summer to a qualifying legal project at a nonprofit public interest organization. To learn more about the program please visit the new Summer Corps webpage. The application will be available on the website beginning on March 16 and must be completed by April 5.

Program highlights for and changes for 2011 include:

  • Larger Education Award: The amount of the education award has increased from $1,000 to $1,132 in 2011.
  • More Opportunities: More Summer Corps funding opportunities mean more opportunities for law students to get involved in the public interest field. The 2011 Summer Corps program will be our largest class to date.
  • Summer Corps Standouts Awards and Publicity: The Summer Corps Standout Program was started in 2009 to recognize members for their innovative approach to meeting the needs of an underserved or marginalized person or community. Winners received an article promoting their service on our public interest blog and more!
  • Improved Efficiency: The paperwork requirements have been drastically reduced to further improve the service experience. The Segal AmeriCorps Education Award is now available electronically and students are able to apply the voucher soon after they finish their service. Please check to make sure your law school is able to accept electronic transfers from the National Service Trust. If your school is not yet registered, please visit the Segal Education Award website.
  • The National Service Movement: National service is as important as ever and law students play an important role in bridging the justice gap. Summer Corps members have consistently reported that their summer internships solidified their commitment to public interest law, while reigniting their passion for the legal profession.

Public Service Resources

Check out the Public Interest Job Search Guide!

The Public Interest Job Search Guide provides practical advice on how to conduct your job or summer internship search, a suggested timeline for all students, a list of resources, and information about public interest law organizations. Access this resource.

To add items or provide feedback, please contact Sylvia Novinsky, Assistant Dean for Public Service Programs, or Mary Irvine, Public Service Fellow.

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