Pro Bono Program Student Newsletter

Pro Bono Program Student Newsletter: Monday, August 23, 2010

About the Pro Bono Newsletter

Welcome back! And to the Class of 2013, welcome to Carolina Law! 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. To view past newsletters, click here.

Student Spotlight

This summer, 3L Catherine Lafferty worked as a Martin Luther King, Jr. Intern at Legal Aid of North Carolina in the Charlotte office, predominantly working in the Battered Immigrant Project. Catherine successfully obtained a domestic violence protective order for one of her domestic violence clients. As attorney supervisor Faith Fickling described "Catherine was well prepared and truly understood the needs of [the] client." Despite the client's anxiety, Catherine was able to ease this client's concerns with confidence and compassion. Catherine has been preparing petitions for U-Visa applicants and petitions for adjustment of status for U-Visa holders as part of her work with the Battered Immigrant Project. Great job, Catherine!

Events at UNC Law

Equal Justice Works Career Fair Information Session
Thursday, 9/2, 12pm, Room 4082

Attention 2Ls and 3Ls interested in public interest employment! Please join Dean Novinsky for this information session if you are planning to attend the Equal Justice Works Career Fair in Washington, DC on October 22-23, 2010, or you want to hear more about it. This information will discuss the Career Fair and registration process. Students who attended last year will also be there to talk about their experiences. Registration for the Career Fair is scheduled to open on August 30. The deadline to submit resumes to employers is September 24, 2010. More information can be found at or you can contact Sylvia Novinsky, Assistant Dean for Public Service Programs.

Save the Date!

Providing Legal Assistance in Low-Income, Rural Communities in the South
Friday, September 10, 12 pm, The Center for the Study of the American South, 410 East Franklin Street
As part of a week-long discussion of the impact of Hurricane Katrina, pro bono students will discuss their partnership with the UNC Center for Civil Rights, Legal Aid of North Carolina, the Mississippi Center for Justice, and legal offices in New Orleans to help deliver pro bono legal services to low-income families. This event is RSVP only. Please contact if you wish to attend. This event is part of a week-long exhibition called The Art of Storytelling. As part of the series, on Wednesday, September 8 at 5:30 pm, Dean Bowler will read from State Street and Dean Lewis will perform original music "Can It Be" composed for the project. For more information about the events, click here.

"The Unfinished Work": Advancing New Strategies in the Struggle for Civil Rights
November 1-2, Friday Center for Continuing Education
Join the UNC Center for Civil Rights, its co-conveners and nation's most talented attorneys, advocates and scholars for a national conference dedicated to the life and career of civil rights pioneer, Julius L. Chambers. This two-day conference will unite practitioners, researchers, policymakers, community activists and students to examine the most p...romising strategies for pursuing equity and eliminating discrimination in public education, housing, democratic representation, employment and criminal justice. Issues in these areas remain at the forefront of today's civil rights struggle and while new trends in engagement, organizing and advocacy have shifted the ways we challenge racial and socioeconomic segregation and discrimination, the inequalities that these age-old problems create remain largely the same. The solutions to these debilitating issues are not simple, but they are possible to construct.

Join us as we analyze these issues and offer a range of innovative and strategic approaches for: applying the law , pursuing policy change, mobilizing well-informed grassroots activists, and encouraging the scholarly pursuit of public interest-oriented research.

Conference registration opens in mid-September. For conference updates and to join the conference mailing list, email or call 919.843.3921.

Current Pro Bono Opportunities

The Pro Bono Board and partner organizations at the law school and in the community are hard at work preparing projects for the 2010-11 school year. Projects are posted on the Pro Bono Board near the mailboxes and are listed online. For a list of pro bono opportunities, visit

Other Public Interest Opportunities

Law Student Writing Competition

As part of their conference "The Unfinished Work": Advancing New Strategies in the Struggle for Civil Rights in honor of Professor Julius L. Chambers, the UNC Center for Civil Rights invites all law students across North Carolina to compete in an innovative publishing project. Submissions should build on Professor Julius L. Chambers' body of work by discussing a current social justice struggle relevant to North Carolina. Papers may address any combination of legal issues relevant to the modern civil rights movement, including K-12 and higher education; housing and community development; criminal and racial justice; employment; voting rights; and/or economic justice.

Papers should original, unpublished works between 6-10 single spaced pages. The work should begin with a title page and must contain the title of the submission, the student's name, year, school and contact information including street address, phone number(s), and email address. To ensure a blind and impartial evaluation of all papers, writers should include personally identifying information (such as the writer's name or school) only on the submission's title page.Submissions are due via email to Adrienne Davis ( by 5:00 pm on Friday, October 15, 2010. For assistance in shaping a paper topic, students may contact the Center for Civil Rights' Community Development Fellow Peter Gilbert ( or Education Fellow Benita N. Jones (

Nominate a Fellow Student for the PSLawNet Pro Bono Publico Award

PSLawNet is currently seeking nominations for the Pro Bono Publico Award. If you would like to nominate a student who has made exceptional contributions to under-served populations, the public interest community, and legal education by performing pro bono or public service work, send in a nomination form by September 9, 2010. The award winner will be invited to Washington, DC to be honored during an Award Luncheon at NALP's Public Service Mini-Conference on Thursday, October 21, 2010.

Summer and Post-Graduate Employment Opportunities


Relman, Dane & Colfax Summer Associate Positions

Relman, Dane & Colfax hires 1-4 Summer Associates each summer. Summer associates provide important assistance in many of the firm's cases, including drafting discovery and briefs, interviewing witnesses and drafting declarations, conducting research, and investigating the claims of individuals seeking representation from the firm. Summer associates have frequent opportunities to attend hearings, mediations, depositions, and press conferences. Candidates interested in positions for summer 2011 should send a cover letter, resume, transcript, list of three references, and writing sample to Relman, Dane & Colfax, 1225 Nineteenth Street NW, Suite 600, Washington, DC 20036, or e-mail us at Candidates are expected to demonstrate a commitment to civil rights, strong academic credentials, and an interest in litigation. Hiring decisions will be made in Fall 2010.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Summer Internships at Legal Aid of North Carolina

Legal Aid of North Carolina (LANC) is seeking applications for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Summer (MLK) Internships for Summer 2011. Each summer, LANC awards paid internships to current law students to participate in LANC's legal services work over the traditional 10-week summer internship period. For summer 2011, LANC plans to place one MLK intern in each of the following LANC field offices: Ahoskie Office, Asheville Office, Boone Office, Charlotte Office, Concord Office, Durham Office, Fayetteville Office, Greensboro Office, Greenville Office, Morganton Office, New Bern Office, Pembroke Office, Pittsboro Office, Raleigh Office, Smithfield Office, Sylva Office, Wilmington Office, Wilson Office, Winston-Salem Office. LANC also plans to place a MLK intern in each of the offices of the following LANC project units: Advocates for Children Services (Durham), Battered Immigrant Project (Charlotte), Battered Immigrant Project (Raleigh), Farmworker Unit (Raleigh), Medical-Legal Partnership for Children (Durham). The MLK Internship Program places talented law students into the real world of legal aid advocacy in order to work on actual cases. MLK interns experience client contact, courtroom participation and legal research and writing on actual cases under the supervision of seasoned legal aid attorneys. Each day of the fellowship, MLK interns are challenged to put classroom training and talent to work on behalf of the many needy individuals that LANC serves and to work creatively to reduce the barriers to a more just society.

The period for bidding for this position through the OCI process ends on August 26. Applications will be accepted for unfilled positions until October 29, 2010. For more information and to bid, see the posting on Symplicity in the September 20-24 OCI. After August 26, see the posting in the Job Bank.

K&L Gates Public Interest Fellowship

The Pittsburgh Foundation and K&L Gates LLP are proud to offer the K&L Gates Public Interest Fellowship Program. The fellowship was established in September 1999 to offer law students the opportunity to assist public service organizations located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Each summer, the program awards up to three successful candidates a fellowship that enables them to spend four weeks of their summer working at one of four designated public interest organizations. Each selected individual receives a stipend of $1000/week.

The Pittsburgh Foundation's K&L Gates Fund provides the funding for the fellowships. K&L Gates established the fund in 1996 with the firm's $250,000 contribution to The Pittsburgh Foundation. Allegheny Conference on Community Development, Education Law Center, KidsVoice and Neighborhood Legal Services have teamed with The Pittsburgh Foundation to offer placement opportunities to K&L Gates Fellows.

  • Allegheny Conference on Community Development. Provides research, analysis, planning and development to improve the economy and quality of life in Southwestern Pennsylvania.
  • Education Law Center. Provides free legal assistance and advice to parents, advocates and other professionals on issues of public education.
  • KidsVoice. Provides legal representation to abused, neglected and other at-risk children.
  • Neighborhood Legal Services Association. Provides legal representation to poor and vulnerable residents of Western Pennsylvania who have financial, landlord-tenant, domestic violence or other legal problems.

Applications will be accepted until October 1, 2010 and should be submitted to Jessica L. Gangjee, For more information, see the posting in the job bank on Symplicity.


Relman Civil Rights Fellowship

Each year, the Relman Civil Rights Fellowship offers one talented and committed new attorney the opportunity to litigate important civil rights cases with experienced practitioners at Relman, Dane & Colfax. We created the fellowship to help us provide clients with legal services of the highest quality while promoting social justice through vigorous enforcement of our nation's civil rights laws. Relman Civil Rights Fellows work closely with the firm's attorneys on cutting-edge cases in civil rights law. Fellows are deeply involved in all aspects and stages of litigation, from developing and investigating cases, interviewing clients, drafting pleadings, and appearing in court. Past fellows have gone on to pursue exciting and fulfilling careers as civil rights lawyers and public defenders. To apply, submit the application form, an official law school transcript, letters of recommendation from (1) a law school professor and (2) an employer, a resume, and a legal writing sample. Applications must be received by October 18, 2010.

Equal Justice Works Fellowship

The Equal Justice Works (formerly NAPIL) Fellowships Program was launched in 1992 to address the shortage of attorneys working on behalf of traditionally under-served populations and causes in the United States and its territories. Recognizing that many obstacles prevent committed attorneys from practicing public interest law, including the dearth of entry-level jobs and daunting educational debts, the program provides financial and technical support to lawyers working on innovative and effective legal projects. The two-year Fellowships offer salary and generous loan repayment assistance; a national training and leadership development program; and other forms of support during the term of the Fellowship. The application and information can be found here. Applications for Class of 2011 Fellowships are due on September 15 and interviews will begin in November.

Everett and Ervin Fellowships at Legal Aid of North Carolina

Everett Fellowships have been offered annually since 1992 as one-year staff attorney positions that serve low-income people who live in rural areas. This year the placements will be in Greenville & Fayetteville, NC. Each Everett Fellow is responsible for handling a general caseload in the traditional areas of poverty law practice and focusing on clients who live in rural areas. Types of cases usually involve housing, employment, consumer, domestic and/or public benefits.

The Judge Samuel J. Ervin Fellowship is a one-year staff attorney position in the LANC-Morganton office, which provides free legal assistance in civil matters to low-income persons in Alexander, Burke, Caldwell, Catawba and McDowell counties of northwest North Carolina. The Ervin Fellow is responsible for handling a general caseload in traditional areas of poverty law practice, involving housing, employment, consumer, public benefits, and elder law issues. Ervin Fellow candidates should expect to be licensed to practice law in North Carolina when the fellowship begins in September 2010. Applicants will be expected to have a demonstrated commitment to community service and to be able to relate well to low-income people in a rural setting.

The current salary is $40,100 for each position. The period for bidding for this position through the OCI process ends on August 26. For more information and to bid, see the posting on Symplicity in the September 20-24 OCI.

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

Public Service News

Young Lawyers Turn to Public Service
The New York Times reports on the rising number of graduating law students who are pursuing careers in public interest. Click here to view the full article.

2010 Public Sector and Public Interest Attorney Salary Report Now Available
The NALP 2010 Public Sector & Public Interest Attorney Salary Report has just been released. The report includes detailed salary data and other compensation metrics for civil legal services attorneys, attorneys working in public defenders' and local prosecutors' offices, and for attorneys working in other nonprofit settings. Salaries for each of these types of organizations are reported nationwide and with additional analyses by geographic area and by area population. Basic information on health and dental insurance and retirement benefits is also featured. In addition, the report incorporates data on federal attorney compensation and provides access to salary information for the offices of state attorneys general. This resource will be available in Career Services soon.

Medical-Legal Partnerships Receive New Boost in Bills
Federal lawmakers in both houses of Congress have proposed bills that would support and expand Medical-Legal Partnership programs throughout the country. Click here to view the full article. For more information on MLP programs, see PSLawNet's blog post here.

Public Service Resources

International Job Search Resource
Finding and Funding International Public Service Opportunities is a resource updated yearly for students interested in international employment after graduation. The document includes tips about the job search process, a list of international organizations, and a list of legal fellowships. Access this resource here.

Federal Legal Employment Opportunities Guide
The Federal Legal Employment Opportunities Guide, published by NALP/PSLawNet, is now available. The guide provides information on where to find federal legal jobs and how to apply. Access this resource here.

Guide to Professionalism Online
Part of a larger guide in an upcoming NALP article, this E-guide provides recommendations for managing a professional online presence in the law profession. Information ranges from choosing your online platforms to best practices in managing your online persona. Access this resource here.

PSLawNet Blog: To access legal news affecting the public interest job market, resources for public interest job seekers, and guest columns from public interest practitioners and career service professionals offering a range of career advice. To check out the blog:

Equal Justice Works Blog: To read about news and thoughts regarding public interest law, check out the Equal Justice Works Blog at

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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