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August 2011

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First Week for the Class of 2014

Jeanne Bishop, Assistant Public Defender in the Office of the Cook County Public Defender in Illinois and adjunct professor at Northwestern School of Law debating UST Law Professor Mark Olser

Jeanne Bishop, Assistant Public Defender in the Office of the Cook County Public Defender in Illinois and adjunct professor at Northwestern School of Law debating UST Law Professor Mark Olser

Orientation or “First Week” began on Monday, August 22nd bright and early for our Class of 2014!  It has been a busy week as the incoming students began their law school education. Not only did they start their Foundations of Justice class, participate in the Voluntary Academic Success Program, but they also witnessed a debate on Juvenile Offenders and Life without Parole that both MPR and Kare11 News covered. 

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Minnesota Justice Foundation: Volunteer Spotlight, Stephanie Wiersma

Megan Sheppard, MJF Staff Attorney, Guest Blogger

This month, MJF is pleased and proud to introduce Stephanie L. Wiersma, a newly married and rising 2L at University of St. Thomas School of Law.

Of her interest in volunteering and social justice, Stephanie says “I have always had a passion for volunteering and lending my skills and abilities where I can.” Prior to coming to law school she worked in the nonprofit sector for four years and met many vulnerable people. Since coming to law school, she has put her passion for volunteering to work early, by completing a pre orientation service project with LegalCorps before she entered law school, providing follow-up phone calls to LegalCorp’s former clients, asking them to reflect on their experiences at a free legal clinic. Last spring, Stephanie worked at MERC alternative school through the Street Law Program, educating students about family law, school law, and criminal law, plus holding a mock trial for her students at the end of the semester.

Of all her volunteer experiences, Stephanie reports that her position with Street Law was one she enjoyed the most, enjoying “…interacting with the kids and providing them concrete facts about the law.” She was very pleased and happy to witness the students use the law she taught them to analyze their own unique life experiences.

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