Winter 2019

Beauty image of the stonework on a Law School

Three Grads Named Equal Justice Works Fellows

Securing housing and stable income for homeless veterans living on Los Angeles’s Skid Row. Providing legal help to undocumented members of New York City’s LGBTQ community. Challenging the state of Mississippi’s school discipline law while informing students of their rights. 

These are the areas where Michigan Law alumnae—Abbey Lent, ’18, Lauren DesRosiers, ’16, and Amelia Huckins, ’18—are directing their energies as 2018 Equal Justice Works Fellows.

Lent, whose Fellowship at the Inner City Law Center is co-sponsored by Raytheon and Kirkland & Ellis LLP, is developing a medical-legal partnership with the West Los Angeles Veterans Administration Medical Center to provide chronically homeless veterans with legal services. 

“Our main focus is helping these men and women—who risked their lives to serve their country—get back on their feet by providing them with income and housing stability,” Lent says.

DesRosiers is assisting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and HIV-affected immigrants who have experienced hate violence through her Fellowship at the New York City Gay and Lesbian Anti-Violence Project—the only organization in New York that provides services specifically for LGBTQ and HIV-affected survivors of violence. 

Co-sponsored by Bloomberg LP and Proskauer Rose LLP, she is working to increase access to legal services through direct services, community building, and policy initiatives for these populations. “I was attracted by the opportunity to build creative solutions and enduring structures that will continue to benefit these communities well into the future,” DesRosiers says.

Returning to her home state, Huckins supports the Mississippi Center for Justice (MCJ) in its mission to create a just society. Before attending Michigan Law, Huckins worked for Teach For America in Mississippi. 

“It definitely influenced my interest in education law, so I am really looking forward to my time at MCJ, where I’ll be advocating for students who have been subjected to long-term suspensions and expulsions.” 

Huckins is challenging the standard of proof in the state’s school discipline law and educating students about their rights. She is being sponsored by the Friends and Family of Philip M. Stern.

The Equal Justice Works Fellowship is the nation’s largest post-graduate public interest fellowship program—and one of the most prestigious. 

The two-year program matches recent graduates who are passionate about public interest work with organizations that are in desperate need of their talents. Applicants develop project proposals in conjunction with potential host organizations. 

Equal Justice Works then secures funding for top applications from sponsoring law firms, corporations, and foundations.