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October 6, 2008

Six UT Law students receive Baron & Budd Public Interest Scholarships

Photo of the six Baron and Budd Public Interest Scholars

2008–2009 Baron & Budd Public Interest Scholarship recipients, (left to right) Lindsey Peebles ’10, Jessica Cassidy ’09, Stephanie Kolmar ’10, Lisa Snead ’09, Andrea Guttin ’09, and Crystal Le ’10

Six students at The University of Texas School of Law have been selected to receive Baron & Budd Public Interest Scholarships for the 2008–2009 academic year. The scholarship provides financial support to students who commit to working 300 pro bono hours with a nonprofit organization providing legal services to underserved individuals or communities.

The scholarships provide a $4,500 stipend and are made possible by a generous gift from the Baron & Budd law firm. They 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 provide much-needed legal assistance in our community,” said Eden Harrington, Director of the Justice Center. “Baron & Budd has given our students the chance to gain valuable experience while contributing 1800 hours of legal work to low-income Texans, and the Law School is very grateful for the firm’s support.”

The following students were selected to receive Baron & Budd Public Interest Scholarships:

Jessica Cassidy, ’09, will work with the ACLU of Texas researching issues related to the Texas Youth Commission and Child Protective Services. Last summer, Cassidy worked for Texas RioGrande Legal Aid.

Andrea Guttin, ’09, will also work with the ACLU of Texas where she will focus on local enforcement of immigration law and the effect in Texas of the federal Criminal Alien Program. Guttin spent last summer as an intern with Latino Justice/Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund in New York.

Stephanie Kolmar, ’10, will work with the Political Asylum Project of Austin on the Immigrant Victims of Crime Protection Project. Last summer, Kolmar worked for the South Texas Pro Bono Asylum Representation Project in Harlingen.

Crystal Le, ’10, will work for the Texas Defender Service, a nonprofit law firm dedicated to representing indigent men and women on Texas’ death row, assisting with post-conviction litigation. Last summer, Le clerked with Legal Services for South Central Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Lindsey Peebles ’10, will work for the Texas Civil Rights Project, a nonprofit that promotes racial, social, and economic justice through education and litigation. Last summer, Peebles worked for the Wellington (New Zealand) Community Law Centre on refugee family reunification.

Lisa Snead, ’09, will work with Advocacy, Inc., a statewide nonprofit that advocates for people with disabilities. Last summer, Snead worked with the Texas Advocacy Project.

About Baron & Budd:

Baron & Budd, P.C. is one of the largest plaintiffs’ firms in the country representing people exposed to toxic substances in their work and living environments. The firm established the Baron & Budd Public Interest Scholarships at UT Law School to support students engaged in pro bono work.

About the Justice Center:

The William Wayne Justice Center at UT Law is dedicated to promoting equal justice for all through legal education. The Justice Center works toward this goal by educating students and attorneys about public interest issues through conferences, research projects, and clinical courses; by encouraging all students to participate in pro bono and public interest law throughout their careers; and by creating public service opportunities for students and graduates.

Related links:

Baron & Budd Public Interest Scholarship Program

William Wayne Justice Center for Public Interest Law

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