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May 1, 2006

Contact: Eden Harrington, Director of the William Wayne Justice Center for Public Interest Law, UT Law, (512) 232-7068, eharrington@law.utexas.edu.

Five UT Law Students Selected as University Co-op Public Interest Summer Fellows

Co-op Fellows
L-R: Prof. David Rabban, Shelly Chattopadhyay, ‘07, Jane Collins, ’07, Parisa Fatehi, ’07, Kathryn Karam, ’07, Selina Llaguno, ‘07, President William Powers.

AUSTIN, Texas — Five students at The University of Texas School of Law have been selected as the second group of University Co-op Public Interest Summer Fellows. The fellowships are awarded annually to outstanding students between their second and third years of law school to support their summer public interest work.

The Fellows were selected by Interim Dean Steven Goode and will be presented on Wed., May 17, at a banquet celebrating the University Co-op Awards for Excellence in Graduate Education.

Each Fellow will receive a $4,000 stipend for the summer. The fellowships are made possible by a grant from the University Co-op, and are administered by the William Wayne Justice Center for Public Interest Law at the Law School.

“We are proud to support these students as they work toward equal justice for all and prepare for careers in public service,” said Eden Harrington, Director of the Justice Center.

The following students were selected as University Co-op Public Interest Summer Fellows:

Shelly Chattopadhyay, ’07, will work with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid in Eagle Pass focusing on farm-worker rights and improving conditions in Colonias. Last summer she clerked for the Bastrop County District Attorney working to obtain protective orders for victims of domestic violence and traveled to Kenya where she worked with several grass roots organizations. Chattopadhyay currently works for the Capital Area AIDS Legal Project and is a board member of Street Law.

Jane Collins, ’07, will work with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid’s housing and consumer protection divisions in Austin. She will focus on litigation addressing non-border Colonias in central Texas, an area she became interested in while participating in the Law School’s new Environmental Law Clinic. Collins, who is also working on a masters degree in Latin American Studies, spent last summer working for the Brazilian Ministry of the Environment as a Rapoport Center for Human Rights and Justice Summer Fellow.

Parisa Fatehi, ’07, will work with the Texas Civil Rights Project representing plaintiffs in free speech and religious discrimination cases and in connection with a new healthcare policy initiative. Last summer she worked at the National Employment Law Project in New York as a Peggy Browning Fellow. Fatehi, who is also pursuing a masters degree at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, has participated in the Transnational Worker Rights Clinic and is a Human Rights Scholar with the Rapoport Center.

Kathryn Karam, ’07, will work with the ACLU of Texas to develop its new litigation program and on the Prison and Jail Accountability Project. Karam currently works at the Political Asylum Project of Austin as a Baron & Budd Scholar. Last summer she interned with the Houston Volunteer Lawyers Program, a non-profit referral service that helps the working poor obtain legal services. Karam is involved in the Survivor Support Network at the Law School, and is a Public Service Scholar with the Justice Center.

Selina Llaguno, ’07, will work with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid in its El Paso office focusing on immigration and domestic violence cases. She is particularly interested in domestic violence as it affects immigrants. Last summer Llaguna interned for U.S. District Judge Kathleen Cardone.

About the University Co-op:

The University Co-op is a not-for-profit corporation owned by the students, faculty and staff of The University of Texas at Austin. In 2004-2005, the University Co-op has provided UT with over $3.7 million in gifts and rebates.

Related Links:
William Wayne Justice Center for Public Interest Law: http://www.utexas.edu/law/centers/publicinterest/
University Co-op: http://www.universitycoop.com
Graduating Law Students Receive University Co-op Public Interest Awards: http://www.utexas.edu/law/news/2006/050106_coopawards.html
Five Students Named Public Service Scholars with the Justice Center at UT Law: http://www.utexas.edu/law/news/2006/030106_publicservice.html