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Jesse McGleughlin L’20

Jesse advocates for youth justice and racial and economic equity. At Penn Law, Jesse works with the Youth Sentencing and Reentry Project to provide mitigation and reentry supports for young people prosecuted in the adult criminal justice system in Philadelphia. This summer, she will work at Still She Rises in Tulsa, a public defender office dedicated to the representation of mothers in the criminal justice system. 

Previously, Jesse worked as the National Training Manager at Community Connections for Youth based in the South Bronx training juvenile justice system stakeholders and grassroots community leaders across the country to develop effective community-based alternative-to-incarceration programs for youth. She managed interdisciplinary teams in Chicago, Charleston, and San Diego, determined to decrease the number of youth of color who were policed, criminalized, and pushed into the juvenile justice system.

Jesse also worked as a Fulbright Scholar in South Africa where she developed an oral history course for high school students on legacies of apartheid in the Kayamandi Township. As an intern at Sonke Gender Justice, Jesse conducted research on the human rights violations suffered by sex workers and advocated for the decriminalization of sex work in South Africa. Jesse advocated for adequate housing and social services as an Arthur Liman Fellow at the Urban Justice Center’s Safety Net Project and studied minority rights and discrimination as a Humanity in Action fellow. As the Head Coordinator of Brown Refugee Youth Tutoring and Enrichment (BRYTE), Jesse oversaw education programs for recently resettled refugee youth and their families, ran a summer enrichment camp and teen organizing program, and developed an interagency working group to provide refugee youth with tailored support services. She graduated from Brown University’s Africana Studies program magna cum laude where her senior thesis examined Civil Rights leader Fannie Lou Hamer’s voting rights activism in 1960’s Mississippi. Jesse is interested in histories of race and racialization, nonfiction writing, youth power, and modes of performance and protest.