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Meet the 2020 Rural Summer Legal Corps Student Fellows

/ Blog Post

Each year, Equal Justice Works partners with the Legal Services Corporation (LSC) for its Rural Summer Legal Corps (RSLC)—a program that provides public-minded law students a one-of-a-kind opportunity to address pressing legal issues facing rural and isolated communities.

Program participants, called Student Fellows serve at LSC-funded civil legal aid organizations, where they spend eight to ten weeks during the summer helping to provide direct legal services, engaging in community outreach and education, and building capacity at the organizations where they are hosted.

This year, 35 Student Fellows from 30 law schools will work remotely at 31 LSC-funded civil legal aid organizations across the country, providing legal assistance to people in rural areas affected by the coronavirus pandemic. To best support the health and safety of our Student Fellows, the host organizations have adjusted their projects to support remote work.

Meet our 2020 RSLC Student Fellows and learn more about what they will be up to this summer:

Selina Barnhardt, Appalachian School of Law

Hosted at Southwest Virginia Legal Aid Society, Selina will assist legal aid attorneys in helping participants in the Appalachian Center for Hope program who are suffering from substance use disorders. To learn more about Selina’s work, click here.

 

 

Christina Belville, Campbell University School of Law

Hosted at Legal Aid Society (LAS) of Middle Tennessee and the Cumberlands, Christina will support the LAS Rural Reentry Outreach & Legal Clinics Project by assisting low-income, rural individuals facing societal barriers due to prior criminal records in rural counties. To learn more about Christina’s work, click here.

 

 

Miguel Cardenas De Avila, University of Oregon School of Law

Hosted at Legal Aid Services of Oregon, Miguel will help older farmworkers in rural areas of Oregon gain equitable access to justice and employment opportunities. To learn more about Miguel’s work, click here.

 

 

Lora Church, University of New Mexico School of Law

Hosted at New Mexico Legal Aid, Lora will support her host organization in expanding its community presence in strategically selected Native American Nations, by performing outreach, conducting client intake, and providing legal services. To learn more about Lora’s work, click here.

 

 

Sara Dicks, University of Florida Levin College of Law

Hosted at Three Rivers Legal Services, Inc., Sara will work on the organization’s Fresh Start Project, providing legal services to low-income rural bankruptcy clients in the Lake City office. To learn more about Sara’s work, click here.

 

 

Myla Garcia, Penn State Dickinson Law

Hosted by California Rural Legal Assistance, Myla will advance the work of the Education Equity Team by focusing on legal research, drafting legal memorandum, and creating outreach materials. To learn more about Myla’s work, click here.

 

 

Andrew Garrett, J. Reuben Clark Law School, Brigham Young University

Hosted at Utah Legal Services, Andrew will work with victims of domestic violence and have an opportunity to represent victims of domestic violence in protective order actions. To learn more about Andrew’s work, click here.

 

 

Elizabeth Gatten, University of Cincinnati College of Law

Hosted at Legal Aid Society of Greater Cincinnati, Elizabeth will assist the Kinship Care Team in providing legal assistance to families in which grandparents and other relatives are caring for children affected by parental substance abuse or incarceration. To learn more about Elizabeth’s work, click here.

 

 

Noah Goldberg-Jaffe, Alexander Blewett III School of Law, University of Montana

Hosted at Montana Legal Services Association, Noah will provide litigation support to attorneys in the organization’s Housing Practice Group. To learn more about Noah’s work, click here.

 

 

Janette Gonzalez, Southern University Law Center

Hosted by Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, Janette will expand the work of the organization’s Farm Worker team by assisting with a variety of employment law matters affecting migrant and seasonal agricultural workers. To learn more about Janette’s work, click here.

 

 

Daniel Hartman-Strawn, University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law

Hosted by Michigan Indian Legal Services, Daniel will expand the organization’s Estate Planning Team’s ability to respond to the estate planning legal needs of Native American communities and tribes throughout Michigan. To learn more about Daniel’s work, click here.

 

 

Mattison Harvey, Drexel University Thomas R. Kline School of Law

Hosted by Legal Services of Eastern Missouri, Mattison will expand the organization’s outreach efforts and capacity for serving victims of domestic violence living in rural eastern Missouri. To learn more about Mattison’s work, click here.

 

 

Hannah Hays, University of Miami School of Law

Hosted by Appalachian Research and Defense Fund of Kentucky, Inc., Hannah will help with the humanitarian crisis involving the former clients of private attorney Eric C. Conn who are facing reviews and the possible loss of their Social Security Disability and/or SSI benefits. To learn more about Hannah’s work, click here.

 

 

Ally Hicks, Belmont University College of Law

Hosted by Kentucky Legal Aid, Ally will help the organization implement its Eviction Diversion Project, an initiative aimed at reducing homelessness in rural, economically-depressed areas. To learn more about Ally’s work, click here.

 

 

Adam Hubbell, Florida State University College of Law

Hosted by Legal Services of North Florida, Adam will support the organization in serving clients in rural counties of the Florida Panhandle that were affected by Hurricane Michael. To learn more about Adam’s work, click here.

 

 

Pablo Jimenez, Albany Law School

Hosted by the Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York, Pablo will work directly with the organization’s attorneys in landlord-tenant and/or family law proceedings (divorce, custody, support, and family offenses).To learn more Pablo’s work, click here.

 

 

Marshall Jones, Oklahoma City University School of Law

Hosted by Oklahoma Indian Legal Services, Marshall will work on the organization’s Indian Child Welfare Act Parent Representation Project, gaining experience in interviewing clients whose children have entered the State or Tribal welfare system. To learn more about Marshall’s work, click here.

 

 

Anna Lynch, The University of Iowa College of Law

Hosted by Iowa Legal Aid, Anna will provide direct civil legal assistance to rural clients, working on the broad range of important issues including domestic abuse and family law. To learn more about Anna’s work, click here.

 

 

Annie McDermott, Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law

Hosted by California Rural Legal Assistance, Annie will provide legal advocacy to low-income students, parents, and guardians with the goal of decreasing unlawful and disproportionate alternative school assignments and disciplinary actions. To learn more about Annie’s work, click here.

 

 

Anna Michel, Northeastern University School of Law

Hosted by Legal Services of Hudson Valley, Anna will broaden and advance service in manufactured home communities, and build on recent successes in manufactured home litigation. To learn more about Anna’s work, click here.

 

 

William Montgomery, Tulane University School of Law

Hosted at Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, William will work with the organization’s Disaster Assistance Group to respond to the legal impacts from Hurricane Harvey, the Great June Flood of 2018, and any other disaster events that may occur. To learn more about William’s work, click here.

 

 

Mary Musselman, University of Mississippi School of Law

Hosted by North Mississippi Rural Legal Services, Mary will work on the organization’s Elder Law Division Project, helping low-income Mississippi elderly residents in various legal matters. To learn more about Mary’s work, click here.

 

 

Ariana Ortiz, Emory University School of Law

Hosted by Georgia Legal Services Program, Ariana will help to educate migrant farmworkers about their housing rights, represent workers in informal negotiations with the housing provider, and represent workers in formal administrative complaints. To learn more about Ariana’s work, click here.

 

 

James Ramger, Howard University School of Law

Hosted by Pine Tree Legal Assistance, James will work in the organization’s Basic Unit and Family Law Unit, providing services to low-income clients throughout Aroostook County, Maine. To learn more about James’ work, click here.

 

 

Patrick Roach, CUNY School of Law

Hosted by Alaska Legal Services Corporation, Patrick will spend the summer helping to increase access to justice for rural Alaskans by developing content for the organization’s websites, mobile app, and Pro Bono Training Academy. To learn more about Patrick’s work, click here.

 

 

Eduardo Ruiz, University of San Francisco School of Law

Hosted by California Rural Legal Assistance, Eduardo will be tasked with monitoring H-2A Temporary Agricultural Worker applications, identifying housing sites, developing outreach strategies with local offices, and preparing educational materials. To learn more about Eduardo’s work, click here.

 

 

Ella Russell, St. Thomas University School of Law

Hosted by Legal Services of Greater Miami, Ella will support the Mobile Home Park Advocacy Project, which serves mobile home park residents in rural South Dade and Monroe County, Florida. To learn more about Ella’s work, click here.

 

 

Malaysha Seals, Florida A&M University College of Law

Hosted by West Tennessee Legal Services, Malaysha will provide education, outreach, and direct legal assistance to low-income West Tennesseans who lack a safety net when confronted with problems affecting basic needs for safe and secure housing and freedom from abuse from consumer scams. To learn more about Malaysha’s work, click here.

 

 

Lindsey Shonehard, Northeastern University School of Law

Hosted by Legal Aid Services of Oklahoma, Lindsey will help migrant workers who are survivors of domestic violence understand their legal rights and overcome obstacles preventing them from successfully escaping abusive relationships. To learn more about Lindsey’s work, click here.

 

 

Auriana Siplin, Southern University Law Center

Hosted by Southeast Louisiana Legal Services, Auriana will expand access to legal services and legal education in the rural parishes of Baton Rouge and Hammond in New Orleans. Auriana will work on continuing the organization’s library outreaches and clinics and developing and distributing information on how to access civil legal services. To learn more about Auriana’s work, click here.

 

 

Amy Spears, Liberty University School of Law

Hosted by Legal Aid of West Virginia, Amy will participate in the organization’s West Virginia Bridging Job Barriers Legal Project, assisting staff with clearing criminal records using West Virginia’s expanded 2019 Expungement Law. To learn more about Amy’s work, click here.

 

 

Michelle Trimper, Albany Law School

Hosted by the Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York, Michelle will assist experienced staff attorneys with landlord-tenant and family law proceedings. To learn more about Michelle’s work, click here.

 

 

Elizabeth Tubbs, University of Florida Levin College of Law

Hosted by DNA People’s Legal Services, Elizabeth will work alongside and under the supervision of Navajo licensed attorneys to provide outreach, community legal education, and a full spectrum of legal assistance to residents in Navajo communities. To learn more about Elizabeth’s work, click here.

 

 

Kendell Wilson, Penn State Dickinson Law

Hosted by Lone Star Legal Aid, Kendell will assist the organization with implementing the Homestead and Disability Property Tax Exemption Project, an initiative aimed at helping low-income residents secure tax exemptions and fight improper tax foreclosure lawsuits. To learn more about Kendell’s work, click here.

 

 

Learn more about becoming an Equal Justice Works Fellow