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The 2020 cohort of fellows build purposeful partnerships with public interest organizations around the world

Through three rigorous and competitive fellowship programs — Project-Based Fellowships, Catalyst Fellows, and the LLM Postgraduate Public Interest Fellowship — the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School is supporting a historic number of JD and LLM grads to launch public interest careers to serve communities in need.

The 2020 cohort of fellows have built purposeful partnerships with public interest organizations around the world. This year, a large number of fellows will work on matters and represent clients who are directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including providing direct legal services to low-income clients in housing and employment matters, ensuring equal access to reproductive health services, and advocating for the release of clients, due to severe health risks, from immigrant detention centers, solitary confinement, and pretrial and probation-related incarceration.

Mia Cabello L’20 will begin her work with the Center for Science in the Public Interest. Cabello will work on national, state, and local issues related to nutrition and public health including food additives, food marketing to children, and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Victoria Glock-Molloy L’20 will work with the Children’s Law Center of New York in two key practice areas: Guardian ad Litem and Healthy Together. By working closely with social workers, investigators, and special education attorneys, Glock-Molloy will advocate for the best interests of her clients to support their safety, permanency, physical and mental health, and education.

Peter Jones L’20 will work with an environmental justice organization in the coming year. Jones hopes to fight for the health and wellbeing of communities affected most severely by climate change.

Vivek Kembaiyan L’20 will also be funded through the Penn Fellowship Program as he joins Still She Rises in Tulsa, OK through the Gideon’s Promise Fellowship, a program that provides training and mentorship to aspiring public defenders.

Emily Kyle L’20 will work with RMAIN to address the critical needs of low-income immigrants detained at the Aurora Detention Center in Colorado. Kyle will provide direct representation to detained immigrants and offer other legal services as needed to meet the demands of the ever-changing populations at the detention center.

Daniel Lewis L’20 will work with Bet Tzedek Legal Services to provide direct representation and legal advice to clients who were victims of California’s predatory lending PACE program, while engaging in community education and outreach to mobilize a coalition of affected low-income homeowners.

Jarron McAllister L’20 will work with the National Center for Law and Economic Justice, advocating for essential workers and workers’ rights in the midst of the pandemic, particularly as the employment landscape fluctuates during the next year.

Jesse McGleughlin L’20, sponsored by the Toll Public Interest Fellowship, will work with the Southern Center for Human Rights to challenge the solitary confinement of individuals experiencing psychiatric disabilities in Georgia jails.
Sabrina Merold L’20, funded by the Penn Law Public Interest Fellowship, will be a fellow at the Center for Reproductive Rights. Merold will identify ways in which federal religious refusal laws are exploited or misused in order to sanction discrimination against women and LGBTQ+ communities. Using novel administrative advocacy strategies, Merold hopes to protect the right to access reproductive health care for all who seek it.
Colleen O’Conor L’20 will work with Legal Services of Northern Virginia to provide greater housing stability for low-income residents of Fairfax Country. O’Conor will represent tenants in eviction proceedings, with a focus on representing tenants who will lose their housing subsidies if they are evicted when the eviction moratorium related to the pandemic is lifted.
Allison Perlin L’20, funded by the University of Pennsylvania Law Review Fellowship, will support immigrant justice efforts at Human Rights First through direct immigration representation and impact litigation. Perlin plans to address the systemic failures clients experience in immigration proceedings or elsewhere when their rights are violated.
Haley Pritchard L’20, a recipient of the Langar, Grogan & Diver Fellowship in Social Justice, will work with the ACLU of PA to challenge pretrial and probation-related incarceration practices through impact litigation and legislative advocacy. Pritchard’s work will also support the ACLU’s decarceral work, focusing on releasing as many people from confinement as possible given the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Jake Romm L’20 will work with Reprieve’s Secret Prisons team to represent clients at Guantanamo Bay. Romm will support several of Reprieve’s projects, including initiating new habeas litigation for two detained clients.
Meroua Zouai L’20 will join the Center for Justice and Accountability and will support active litigation in their pending war crimes, crimes against humanity, and torture cases. CJA’s war crimes practice area brings civil and criminal cases in the United States against individual human rights abusers.

 

As part of the LLM Postgraduate Public Interest Fellowship Program:

Bindu Natesha Doddahatti LLM’20 will work as a community advocate in the Conviction Integrity Unit of the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office.
Yumna Kamel LLM’20 plans to work with an organization that fights against anti-immigration movements to empower immigrant communities across the United States.
Atsushi Shiraki LLM’20 will work with Human Rights Watch staff in Tokyo to enhance access to justice for the underprivileged. Shiraki will implement clinical legal education at Japanese law schools to help launch a new generation of Japanese lawyers committed to international human rights.

 

“We are excited about the growth of the LLM Fellowship program, we are very proud of our fellowship recipients, and we celebrate their commitment to social justice around the globe” said Caroline Ruhle, Associate Director of International and LLM Counseling.

“This year’s cohort of fellows will begin their legal careers in an unprecedented climate of legal need due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Neta Borshansky, Director of Public Sector Careers and Government Programs. “And each fellow will play some role in alleviating the devastating impact of the pandemic through a variety of strategies, including direct legal representation, impact litigation, and policy advocacy. We look forward to supporting our recent graduates throughout this uniquely challenging year, where the importance of access to counsel is more apparent than ever.”

Penn Law has a long history of supporting its recent graduates as they begin their public interest careers through fellowships. The law school launched its own postgraduate fellowship program in 2009 and has funded close to 80 fellows over the last eleven years. In addition to this year’s extensive cohort of Penn Law Fellows, additional 2020 graduates will begin fellowships this fall that are funded through:

Lelabari Giwa-Ojuri L’20
Equal Justice Works
Mariel Mussack L’20
Skadden Foundation
Valerie Snow L’20
The Independence Foundation