Lauren Hebl (3L) has been awarded the Veterans Clinic Alumni Scholarship for the Fall 2013 semester. "It is truly an honor to have been awarded this scholarship and a privilege to be a part of the veterans clinic. I am sincerely grateful for this opportunity and look forward to another wonderful semester with the veterans clinic,” said Hebl. Veterans Clinic Alumni Scholarships are awarded to the most dedicated students serving the Veterans Legal Assistance Clinic (VLAC). Scholarships are made possible by funds raised at the annual TJSL Alumni and Friends Golf Tournament. Recent recipients include: Janaye Martin and Matthew Ferrara in 2011, Conrad Ohashi (3L), Matthew Katsionis '12, and Nicole Heffel '13 in 2012 and Kristiana Erthner (3L), Kristen Green and Rachel Weckhorst Espejo '13 in 2013.
Since 2006, VLAC has successfully provided limited legal assistance, as well as full service legal representation, to the residents and alumni of Veterans Village of San Diego – a highly successful, residential program that provides housing, substance abuse, mental health, and job training services to formerly homeless veterans struggling to regain full participation in society. Under the direction of Professor Steve Berenson, the clinic offers students valuable hands-on experience in handling a wide range of cases spanning family, consumer, and administrative laws. “Lauren was extremely conscientious and diligent in her work on a number of complicated cases,” said Director of the Veterans Legal Assistance Clinic Professor Berenson. “She was a pleasure to work with at all times. We are thrilled that she will continue her work with the veterans clinic during the spring semester.” “The most rewarding part of the experience was the freedom to explore the complexities of each case, have the ability to form an attorney-client relationship with individuals I came to know and respect, and to stand next to them in court as their legal representative,” shared Hebl. “It was an invaluable learning experience that helped me understand what it really meant to be an advocate for those who have already given so much, and to work with such a talented group of student colleagues under the superior guidance of both Professor Berenson and Professor Rebecca Nieman was truly a pleasure,” she added.