Mariel Mussack L’20
Mariel has witnessed firsthand the overwhelming need for legal representation in every forum and every area of the law, especially for those who cannot afford it. She hopes to spend her career addressing this issue and helping poor Philadelphians access the justice system in a meaningful way.
Mariel is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she majored in Global Studies and Comparative Literature and graduated with Highest Honors. As an undergraduate student, Mariel spent most of her time advocating for immigrant workers in various capacities. As one of the first members of LINC (Linking Immigrants to New Communities), she provided ESL classes and Know Your Rights trainings to immigrants working at the University. As co-chair of Student Action with Workers, she organized and implemented campaigns meant to address grievances voiced by low-wage workers at UNC.
After college, Mariel moved to Philadelphia to work as a paralegal at Community Legal Services (CLS), where she assisted low-income tenants facing eviction and termination of subsidized housing benefits.
At Penn Law, Mariel is the co-director of the Penn Law Immigrant Rights Project, through which she organizes a variety of pro bono projects and clinics that serve immigrants in the Philadelphia area. She is also on the boards of If/When/How (Law Students for Reproductive Justice) and the National Lawyers’ Guild. Mariel spent her 1L summer at the Women’s Law Project, where she worked on a variety of matters relating to equal pay and sexual harassment at schools and at work, as well as pregnancy and breastfeeding accommodations. She is currently externing in the employment unit at CLS, where she primarily assists immigrant clients with wage theft matters.