By far one of the greatest ways USF Public Interest Law Foundation helps to make an impact in our community is by providing grants to USF Law students who choose to pursue unpaid summer legal work. This past summer, 25 remarkable students were selected to each receive grants of $4,000. We are proud to offer these grants through the generous donations we receive throughout the year as well as through several fundraising events sponsored by USF and PILF.
Our largest fundraising opportunity is the Annual PILF Gala and Auction. This year’s Gala and Auction takes place on November 4th. As the Auction draws nearer, we want to take a moment to introduce our most recent 2011 Summer Grantees in the Q&A’s below.
A CHILD NEEDS MORE THAN JUST LEGAL HELP
A former Oakland school teacher talks about how she spent the summer helping provide legal services to SF and Bay Area youth.
Jenifer Frudden is from Iowa City, Iowa and is a graduate of the University of Michigan. She spent her summer at Legal Services For Children in San Francisco.
Legal Services for Children (LSC) provides legal services to the youth of the San Francisco Bay Area. In addition to staff attorneys, LSC has on-site social workers and are able to provide social services in conjunction with legal services.
1. Why did you choose law school, and why USF in particular?
In my former life I was a middle school teacher in Oakland. I came to law school because I want to continue working with the diverse juvenile population that I served as a teacher. USF has a strong public interest community and I knew that by attending USF I would be heavily supported in my decision to pursue child advocacy law
2. What kind of work did you do this summer, any projects in particular?
As an intern at LSC I had the opportunity to attend Probate Court to observe dependency and guardianship hearings and to assist in dependency and guardianship cases. Additionally, I was able to attend Immigration Court and assist on LSC’s Detained Immigrant Children’s Project, with the possibility of representing a minor in a voluntary departure hearing. I wrote a memorandum of law on whether minors who are in court for truancy proceedings have a constitutional or other statutory right to counsel when they are locked up pursuant to a contempt finding. In addition to office work I had the added bonus of attending home visits to conduct client interviews.
3. Tell us something about the work you did that you found inspiring.
LSC has a unique holistic approach for dealing with juveniles and their legal and social issues. Children who need legal services often have other issues or concerns that have led them to seek out legal relief. LSC knows that a child needs more than just legal help and works side by side with social workers to ensure that their clients’ legal and social needs are met.
4. Are you interested in public interest legal work as a career? What sort of law
would you like to practice?
I would like to continue working in child advocacy.
In the coming weeks leading up to November 4th we will continue to highlight our 2011 Summer Grantees. To support students like Jeni you can make a donation using this DonationFORM. Oh and click here more info about the Annual Auction.