Public service has always been a part of BU Law’s legacy. Our students, faculty, and alumni demonstrate their commitment through clinical work, pro bono projects, public service fellowships, and through their own lives and careers. On March 5th, at a reception for our alumni and admitted students at the DC law office of Covington & Burling, I will have the honor of presenting BU Law’s Washington DC Public Service Alumni Award to Deborah Mayer (’97), Director of Investigations for the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Ethics and Commander in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps.
Like Deborah, many of our current students want to pursue careers in public interest law. Even in the face of employment challenges and societal issues, our students are ready and willing to step in and help those in need.
Demonstrating our commitment to public service, President Brown has issued a $1,000,000 matching challenge for Post-Graduate Public Service Fellowships at the School of Law. These fellowships help graduates launch their desired careers while supporting struggling courts, organizations, and agencies. Please join us in supporting our Public Service Fellows and the important work they are doing in our communities.
At BU Law’s Human Trafficking Clinic, just named one of the nation’s most innovative law school clinics by The National Jurist, students assist victims of sex and labor trafficking. In 2013, our students helped publish the first-ever human trafficking guide for Massachusetts attorneys, which gives lawyers the information and tools to navigate the challenging legal issues faced by victims.
Next month, dozens of our students will travel to cities across the country on pro bono service trips during their spring break to work on legal issues that disproportionately affect low-income individuals. Whether they spend the week working in Detroit, Newark, New Orleans, or other cities, they will devote themselves to meeting the legal needs of under-served communities.
And in April, our students will host the annual Public Interest Program (PIP) Auction to fund grants for students working in unpaid public interest or government summer internships. Last year, PIP raised enough money to provide grants to 80 BU Law students. I hope that you will attend this great event and bid on the auction items! See you there!