News & Media

Community Lawyers, Inc. and TJSL Team up for Summer Program

Published: May 30, 2013
The CLI-TJSL Students Meet for the First Time

What kind of lawyer do you want to be?

That’s a question the students who have joined the CLI-TJSL Summer Internship Program are hoping to answer.

CLI is Community Lawyers, Inc., a program founded in 2005 in Compton, California, to provide low and moderate-income people access to affordable legal services and develops innovative opportunities for attorneys and law students in underserved communities.

In other words – to help close the “access to justice gap.”

TJSL Professor Luz Herrera is a co-founder of CLI. After establishing a summer program for law students in Los Angeles, CLI has teamed up with TJSL’s Career Services Office to bring the program to San Diego. The TJSL students will all be doing summer internships at several non-profit organizations that do public interest work: Employee Rights Center; Fair Housing Council of San Diego; Utilities Consumer Action Network and the Housing Opportunities Collaborative.

“It’s exciting to pilot our popular summer internship program here in San Diego,” said Professor Herrera. “The Community Lawyers Summer Internship program introduces students early in their legal career to the opportunities that exist to impact underserved communities and develop rewarding careers.”

“I was very excited to help launch this program,” said Associate Director of Career Services Maysa Eissa, who coordinated the program for TJSL. “Students often have little time to reflect and really think about what they want to do with their law degree, specifically which populations and causes they hope to impact.  As the program grows over the years, we hope that this will be an opportunity for our law students who are committed to social justice to gain exposure early on to not just nonprofits within San Diego County, but also private firms that serve underrepresented populations.  Throughout the summer, I hope each student will have found a mentor who can join them as they explore and begin to navigate their public service career.”

The students participating in the CLI-TJSL Summer Law School Program are: Danielle Tailleart 2L, Charlene Mayers 1L, Karen Barragan 2L, Fernanda Oviedo 2L, James White 2L, Phillip Jackson 1l and Edith Polanco 1L.