Mackenzie Libbey L’22
Mackenzie aims to pursue a career advocating on behalf of tenants and promoting policy reform that increases access to safe, affordable housing for low-income and working-class people. While studying Spanish and anthropology at Mount Holyoke College, Mackenzie interned in Covenant House International’s Latin America Unit, which supports the organization’s youth shelters in Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Honduras. While at Covenant House, Mackenzie began to appreciate the concrete ways in which homelessness and housing insecurity multiplied the injustices that come with living in poverty.
After college, Mackenzie worked as a legal assistant at Legal Services NYC in the Bronx office’s Public Benefits and LGBTQ+ Unit. At Legal Services, Mackenzie helped clients recover, maintain, and increase a range of public benefits, assisted individuals with civil legal matters relating to their gender and/or sexual identity, and supported housing attorneys defending tenants in Bronx Housing Court. Witnessing the devastating impact that evictions and terminations of public benefits had on her clients and their families affirmed Mackenzie’s commitment to pursuing a law degree and a career in direct legal services.
Mackenzie spent her 1L summer working in the Housing Unit at Community Legal Services of Philadelphia and is continuing in the unit as an extern this fall. At Penn, she serves as the Volunteer Coordinator of the Walk-in Legal Assistance Clinic, Mentorship Co-Chair for the Student Public Interest Network, and as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Law and Social Change.
In her spare time, Mackenzie enjoys running (interspersed with a lot of walking), reading fiction, and trying to tame her beautiful but poorly behaved cat.