Archive for Faculty/Staff Pro Bono

Volunteer Opportunity!

Seeking Volunteer Attorney/Law Student for Fridays

National Veterans Legal Services Program

Lawyers Serving Warriors® Pro Bono Program

 

The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) has worked since 1980 to ensure that our nation’s 25 million veterans and active duty personnel receive the government benefits to which they are entitled. NVLSP’s Lawyers Serving Warriors® (LSW) Pro Bono Program assists veterans with disability claims including challenges to VA denials of service-connection for PTSD due to military sexual trauma, applications for combat related special compensation, requests for medical retirement, discharge upgrades, and claims before the Board of Veterans’ Appeals.

 

NVLSP seeks an attorney or law student volunteer to assist the LSW program in our DC office on Fridays. The volunteer will work closely with LSW attorneys to monitor case developments and ensure client readiness for representation. The position will involve extensive contact with Veteran clients and pro bono lawyers and will provide an introduction to the fundamentals of military disability law.  The position is available immediately and can continue into the fall.

 

To apply, please send a cover letter, resume, and 2 references to Rochelle Bobroff, Director of Pro Bono Program at NVLSP, Rochelle@nvlsp.org.

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Faculty/Staff Pro Bono Spotlight – June 28, 2016

Volunteer LogoEvery week, we honor an exceptional faculty/staff member who is making significant contributions to under-served populations, the public interest community, and/or legal education.

Today, we’re featuring an outstanding faculty member from the Gonzaga University School of Law, dedicated to providing pro bono mediation services.


 

Megan Ballard

Who: Megan J. Ballard, Professor of Law at Gonzaga University School of Law

Where: Gonzaga University School of Law partnered with Refugee Connections Spokane and the Community Colleges of Spokane to host a workshop, ‘American Law & Justice for Refugees and Immigrants’ on March 9, 2016 at Gonzaga University School of Law in Spokane, Washington.

What:  Professor Ballard took the lead in coordinating a half-day workshop on American Law and Justice for Refugees and Immigrants, held March 9, 2016.  This collaborative workshop helped refugees and immigrants overcome barriers to justice by providing participants information about their legal rights and responsibilities, and offering a positive view of legal actors, in 11 languages other than English.

The workshop served approximately 160 refugees and immigrants, representing more than 15 different languages.  Community Colleges of Spokane provided interpreters for the largest 11 language groups.  Most of the substantive instruction (including the criminal justice system, domestic violence, discrimination, police stops, and children) was carried out in small, language-based groups facilitated by 26 volunteers comprised of lawyers, judges, law professors, and law students and staffed by interpreters.  In addition, Washington State Supreme Court Justice Mary Yu addressed the entire group, explaining constitutional rights and the rule of law, and providing each participant with a pocket-sized U.S. Constitution.  Spokane Police Sergeant Dan Waters visited each of the small groups and gave everyone an emergency language card to facilitate communication between police and English language learners.  From Gonzaga Law School, 7 students helped facilitate the small groups, plus 6 additional students volunteered during the workshop and with earlier preparation; 7 faculty and JD staff also helped to facilitate small-group instruction and assisted with preparation and execution of the event; and at least 14 staff lent assistance before, during and after the workshop.  Collaborating organizations – Community Colleges of Spokane and Refugee Connections Spokane – also provided volunteers.

During a half-hour refreshment break, eight service providers and others staffed tables to provide information to participants.  Each organization provided various printed resources at their table, some of which were translated into different languages.  The organizations providing information, in addition to Refugee Connections Spokane were: Spokane County Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Program, Catholic Charities, Northwest Justice Project, TeamChild, Northwest Fair Housing, Washington State Minority and Justice Commission, Washington State Interpreter Commission, Spokane Police Department, and the Washington Defenders Association.

On her work: Professor Ballard underscored the importance of this event: “Not only does this workshop help to welcome refugees and immigrants, but it introduces the broader Spokane legal community to a population and their legal needs that is otherwise somewhat hidden.

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Faculty/Staff Pro Bono Spotlight – June 21, 2016

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Every week, we honor an exceptional faculty/staff member who is making significant contributions to under-served populations, the public interest community, and/or legal education.

Today, we’re featuring an outstanding faculty member from the Texas Tech University School of Law, dedicated to providing pro bono mediation services.


Blankley - Professor

Who: Professor Gerry W. Beyer (Governor Preston E. Smith Regents Professor of Law)

Where: Partnership with Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas in Lubbock, Texas

What: Pro Bono Wills Clinic. Since the incorporation of a formal pro bono program at Texas Tech School of Law in 2014, Professor Beyer has been an integral part of the Pro Bono Wills Clinic.  Over the past two years, approximately 70 law student volunteers have helped draft wills and assist with the execution of advanced directives and powers of attorney for low-income Lubbock-area clients under the supervision of licensed volunteer attorneys.  As part of the program, Professor Beyer has shared his nationally recognized wealth of expertise in estate planning in a condensed one hour “Nuts & Bolts” training for both students and licensed attorneys.  Licensed attorneys are able to earn CLE credit for attending the presentation.  In addition to teaching the crash course, Professor Beyer attends the two-part clinic, providing overall assistance and mentoring to students and practitioners.  He is always standing by to accept a more complex case himself, assisting a needy client and providing valuable mentorship to an eager student.

On his work: “Providing estate planning services to economically-challenged individuals is of vital importance, perhaps even more so than for those in better financial situations.  Participating students gain a genuine appreciation of how an estate plan can reduce and even prevent family squabbles about property distribution and who will serve as guardians for the client’s minor children. The students also learn how other documents clarify who can manage the client’s property and make health care decisions when the client is unable to do so.”

“The volunteer students and their supervising attorneys did a stellar job in drafting and supervising the execution of the clients’ estate planning documents.  In addition, other students partnered with me to handle cases for several legal aid clients who needed probate services. I was extremely impressed with the skill and professionalism of these students sometimes making me wonder whether they were already licensed!”

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Introducing New Blog Series: Faculty/Staff Pro Bono Spotlight

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We are excited to introduce a new blog series: Faculty/Staff Pro Bono Spotlight! Every week, we will be honoring an exceptional faculty/staff member who is making significant contributions to under-served populations, the public interest community, and/or legal education.

Today, we’re featuring an outstanding faculty member from the University of Nebraska, College of Law, dedicated to providing pro bono mediation services.


Blankley - Professor

Who: Professor Kristen Blankley, University of Nebraska College of Law

Where: The Meditation Center – Lincoln, NE

What: Professor Blankley has an extensive relationship with The Mediation Center, a non-profit mediation service provider in Lincoln, NE. She sits on the Board of Directors, works as a pro bono mediator, and helps the Center with their educational opportunities for mediators. Professor Blankley serves as a mediator in family, small claims, and other community cases. She has also donated time as a facilitator working with large groups, including the Nebraska Legislature and public sector workplaces.

On her work: “I love working with The Mediation Center. I am able to practice what I teach as well as influence policy and best practices.

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