Pro Bono Program Student Newsletter

Pro Bono Program Student Newsletter: Monday, September 7, 2015

About the Pro Bono Newsletter

The mission of the UNC School of Law Pro Bono Program is to increase the provision of high quality, low-cost legal services to North Carolina residents in need by empowering lawyers to accept more pro bono cases and creating a life-long commitment to pro bono work among UNC Law students. This newsletter supports our mission by providing current students with a comprehensive list of ways to get involved in Pro Bono work while still a student at UNC Law, as well as offering context for the good work our students do through news and information.

Attorney-Sponsored Projects

To secure a spot on an Attorney-Sponsored Project, you must sign up at the Pro Bono Bulletin Board near the student mailboxes. For other questions please contact Molly Gross, Attorney Projects Coordinator, at uncprobonoprojects@gmail.com.

Biking While Black

The League of American Bicyclists is interested in whether demographic information on bicycling-related traffic enforcement is available in major cities and if patterns of disproportionate enforcement activity are common. This project would involve requesting available demographic information on bicycling-related traffic citations from major cities and reporting on findings about the demographics of persons cited. Depending upon the results it may also involve comparisons of city laws and/or policies that might explain different enforcement patterns and suggest solutions to the problem of “bicycling while black.”

Time Commitment: 30 hours/total

Remote Location

Divorce Project

UNC Law Public Service Programs and Legal Aid of North Carolina are partnering to hold a Pro Bono Divorce Project this spring. Students will have the opportunity to interview and represent low-income clients in simple divorces. Students will interview clients, draft pleadings, and 2L and 3L students will conduct divorce hearings under attorney supervision.  

Time Commitment: 1 training at a noon lunch hour; 1 night of clinic meeting with clients, and 1 afternoon conducting clinic hearings.

NC Education Consortium

The Civic Education Consortium (www.civics.org) is a program at UNC-Chapel Hill that provides curriculum and professional development to North Carolina’s K-12 teachers. We are hosting a free workshop for teachers on Oct. 25, “Open or Closed? Exploring Government, Transparency & Freedom of Information,” which will help educators teach their middle and high school students about sunshine laws, FOIA, government transparency, right to know, etc. We would love assistance in creating curriculum to provide to the teachers, namely by having law students research 5-10 North Carolina based cases/issues involving open records and FOI that show why such laws are important and relevant, and that younger students would find interesting. We would like a summary written of the situation and some discussion questions or interactive activities created to accompany the case/issue.

Student Group-Sponsored Projects

If you would like your project to appear below, please contact Allie Weller, Group Projects Coordinator, at aweller3@live.unc.edu.

ACLU of North Carolina Know Your Rights Project

Help ACLU and Legal Aid create student-friendly documents that will help students understand their First Amendment, privacy, and disciplinary rights by compiling information cards.

20-30 Hours this semester.

For more information, please contact Lindsie Trego (lindsiet@live.unc.edu).

Community Legal Project

The Community Legal Project (CLP) partners with the Compass Center for Women and Families to provide free legal information to Compass Center clients. Students will interview clients, research legal questions related to family law and landlord/tenant law issues, and compose an informational memo that will be reviewed by a licensed attorney. This is a great project for students interested in gaining research and writing skills, and students who enjoy interacting with clients.

Various Hours this Semester.

For more information, please contact Caline Hou (ckhou@live.unc.edu) or Bethany Boring (bboring01@unc.edu).

ACLU of North Carolina

Student-Parent Self Advocacy Packets

Help ACLU and Legal Aid create packets to help parents advocate for their children in the often complicated educational bureaucracy. These packets will include step-by-step instructions and necessary documents for a variety of situations students and parents face.

25-35 Hours this Semester.

For more information, please contact Lindsie Trego (lindsiet@live.unc.edu).

Cancer Pro Bono Project Interest Meeting

September 17, 2015

Noon in Room 5042

This project is an amazing way to build client counseling and drafting skills, meet attorneys, and most importantly, to help cancer patients and their families in a time of great need. At the meeting, you'll get to meet their board, learn more details about the project, and find out how you can get involved. Plus, there will be dessert!

Contact unclawcancerproject@gmail.com with questions.

News and Special Events

Pro Bono Program Fall Food Truck Rodeo

September 16 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

CDO Parking Lot

Featuring: Chirba Chirba, Hibachi Express, Parlez-Vous Crepe, Captain Ponchos Tacos, and Local Yogurt. Percentage of proceeds will assist Winter/Spring Break Pro Bono Trips.

Contact Will Norrell (norrell@live.unc.edu) or Vinita Tandon (vinita17@live.unc.edu).

1L Class Coordinator Interest Meeting

September 14, 2015

Noon in Room 4004

The Pro Bono Board will select a member of the Class of 2018 to serve on the UNC Pro Bono Board as 1L Class Coordinator. Come find out more about the 1L Class Coordinator position and the application process. Applications go live Monday, September 14!

Contact Jamie Rudd (jerudd@live.unc.edu) or Olivia Taylor (oetaylor@live.unc.edu) with questions.

Keep Logging Those Hours!

  • Class of 2016: 13,064 hours logged, and 82.5% class Pro Bono participation.
  • Class of 2017: 5,736 hours logged, and 73% class Pro Bono participation.
  • Class of 2018: we are excited to get your results!

Pro Bono Alumni Board Networking Social

September 25, 2015

Time/Location: TBD

Save the Date — The Pro Bono Alumni Board invites you to come out and network with attorneys committed to encouraging Pro Bono work at our school and in our state. Stay tuned for more details!

Pathways to Pro Bono CLE

September 18, 2015

1:00 - 4:30 p.m. in Room 5042

The Pro Bono Program invites you to a free CLE on Friday, Sept. 18, 2015. Participants can attend an Ethical Issues Presentation and one of three Pro Bono project trainings: Cancer Project, Veterans Child Support Modification Project, or Safe Child Immigrant Project. Participants will receive three hours of CLE credit. One hour of those three will be categorized as professional responsibility. Feel free to send any questions about this event to Sylvia Novinsky (snovinsk@email.unc.edu). Registration is required for this event is free. Register for this event at http://goo.gl/forms/fMzCYR24bB.


To add items or provide feedback, please contact Sylvia Novinsky, Assistant Dean for Public Service Programs, or Jamie Rudd, 3L Class Coordinator.

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