UDC Law is excited to announce the launch of a partnership with DC Affordable Law Firm (DCALF) and Georgetown University Law Center that will provide recent UDC Law graduates with low bono experience. Initially a three-way partnership between Georgetown Law and the law firms of DLA Piper and Arent Fox, DCALF has expanded to include UDC Law graduates. This fall, 2020 graduates Jamila Hubbard, Era Kryeziu and Allison Rice became the inaugural class of DCALF fellows from UDC Law. UDC Law’s nationally ranked clinical program represents District residents every year. As DCALF Staff Attorneys, Hubbard, Kryeziu and Rice will continue doing that important work.
At the conclusion of the program, DCALF fellows receive an LL.M from Georgetown Law. Graduates are selected through a rigorous application and interview process that considers a wide range of factors, including a demonstrated commitment to providing top-flight legal service to D.C. residents.
DCALF is a local legal services organization that provides “low bono” legal services to D.C. residents whose incomes are within 200 to 400% of the federal poverty guideline, low enough that they are unable to afford an attorney but not low enough to qualify for free legal services. DCALF helps these residents avoid navigating the justice system alone, charging a very low hourly rate to represent them on matters including immigration, domestic violence and family law cases.
Going forward, three or four UDC Law graduates will be selected each year for the DCALF fellowship where they will serve as Staff Attorneys at DCALF for 15-month terms. For the first three months of the program, the fellows will undergo intensive training. Afterward, they will work on cases under the supervision of DCALF attorneys.
Hubbard, Kryeziu and Rice recently spoke about the impact of the DCALF fellowship on their legal education and careers.
“Working at DCALF means having the opportunity to test my litigation skills and expand into new areas of the law, all while helping the District’s most vulnerable populations. I am also very grateful to be among the first UDC students to be given this amazing opportunity.”
“The type of clients the DC Affordable Law Firm assists is particularly compelling for me because I was a part of that group for the majority of the time I have lived in D.C. I have personally experienced and have seen colleagues struggle with various legal issues with little or no legal support. Being able to assist individuals of limited means with legal issues is part of the reason I wanted to go to law school. I believe that starting my legal career with the DC Affordable Law Firm will not only provide me the opportunity to assist individuals that fall into an access of justice gap but would also provide me with additional training and tools so that I could continue serving such individuals once the fellowship is completed.”
“The DCALF fellowship gives me the ability to work directly with the members of my community. This is fulfilling work and I can’t imagine doing anything else as an attorney. I am so grateful to be a part of the first class from UDC.”
Read more about DCALF and the fellowship in The D.C. Affordable Law Firm Expands Services and Partnerships to “Meet the Moment” by Georgetown Law.