News

Equal Justice Works and Legal Services Corporation Select Student Fellows for Rural Summer Legal Corps

/ Press Release

Thirty law students will spend their summer serving rural communities at LSC-funded civil legal aid organizations across the nation. 

WASHINGTON, D.C., MAY 22, 2019—Equal Justice Works, the nation’s largest facilitator of opportunities in public interest law, and the Legal Services Corporation (LSC), the nation’s single largest funder of civil legal aid for low-income Americans, today announced the selection of 30 law students for its Rural Summer Legal Corps (RSLC).

“The Rural Summer Legal Corps allows legal aid programs in rural America to serve significantly more people than they could otherwise,” explains LSC President James J. Sandman. “The 30 Student Fellows are smart, passionate, and committed to providing excellent service, and we hope that they will become part of the next generation of career legal aid lawyers.”

Launched in 2016, RSLC places law students at LSC-funded civil legal aid organizations that serve rural and isolated communities across the United States and its territories. Student Fellows spend eight to ten weeks during the summer gaining hands-on experience helping to provide direct legal services, engaging in community outreach and education, and building capacity at the organizations where they serve.

“The Rural Summer Legal Corps addresses the access to justice crisis for people living in rural communities and provides a terrific opportunity for passionate public-minded law students to explore a career in civil legal aid,” says David Stern, executive director at Equal Justice Works.

The 2019 RSLC Student Fellows will take on challenging projects that address a range of legal issues. Examples of these projects include:

  • Phillip Clifton will conduct legal needs assessments for individuals affected by the opioid crisis. Phillip, a law student at Washington University in St. Louis School of Law, will be hosted by West Tennessee Legal Services.
  • Priscilla Mendoza will work on employment law matters affecting migrant and seasonal agricultural workers. Priscilla, a law student at Texas Southern University, Thurgood Marshall School of Law, will be hosted by Texas RioGrande Legal Aid – Mercedes.
  • Maxwell West will help people facing foreclosures in the rural counties around Tulsa, Oklahoma. Maxwell, a law student at Oklahoma City University School of Law, will be hosted by Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma.

RSLC Student Fellows have helped hundreds of communities. In 2018, law students served across 21 states, providing direct legal services to more than 1,500 individuals.

Click here to learn about the 2019 Student Fellows and their projects.

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About Equal Justice Works
Equal Justice Works is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides opportunities for lawyers to transform their passion for public service into a lifelong commitment to equal justice. As the nation’s largest facilitator of opportunities in public interest law, Equal Justice Works brings together an extensive network of law students, lawyers, nonprofit legal aid organizations, and supporters to promote public service and inspire a lifelong commitment to equal justice. Visit www.equaljusticeworks.org for more information.

About Legal Services Corporation
Legal Services Corporation (LSC) is an independent nonprofit established by Congress in 1974 to provide financial support for civil legal aid to low-income Americans. The Corporation currently provides funding to 133 independent nonprofit legal aid programs in every state, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories. Visit www.lsc.gov for more information.

Contact:
Heena Patel
Communications Manager
Phone: 202-466-3686
Email: hpatel@equaljusticeworks.org

The Rural Summer Legal Corps addresses the access to justice crisis for people living in rural communities and provides a terrific opportunity for passionate public-minded law students to explore a career in civil legal aid.

David Stern /
Executive Director, Equal Justice Works

Learn more about becoming an Equal Justice Works Fellow