Prof. Neha Lall, director of externships at UB School of Law, asked her students to write essays about their summer externship experiences. Here is one of them, by 3L Christian Caicedo. He is concentrating his legal studies in environmental sustainability and affordable housing, with the intention of working in property development. Originally from Miami, Fla., Caicedo […]
Prof. Neha Lall, director of externships at UB School of Law, asked her students to write essays about their summer externship experiences. Here is one of them, by 3L Catherine Kraft. She is concentrating her legal studies in cybersecurity and emergency management policy, with hopes of ultimately working for the federal government in cybersecurity and […]
The University of Baltimore Clinical Programs provide free legal representation to underserved members of the Baltimore and greater Maryland community. The clinics provide pro bono representation in immigration, housing, family, veterans’ issues, and many other areas of law. Some of our clients are Limited English Proficient, meaning that interpreters are needed to facilitate our representation.
On May 22, 2019, the MSBA Taxation Section’s Annual Irving Shulbank Memorial Dinner and Program was held at the Center Club in Baltimore, Maryland, where the IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig delivered the evening’s keynote address.
The honorees included the University of Baltimore School of Law’s very own UB Tax Clinic alum Dara Polakoff, who received the Council’s book award.
Each year, the MSBA Tax Council awards a $500 monetary book prize to a J.D. or LL.M. candidate interested in practicing tax law in the state of Maryland.
(L-R) Immigrant Rights Clinic Student Attorneys Ryan Frace and Stephen Gaines
By Stephen Gaines, Student Attorney in the Immigrant Rights Clinic
Tonight, a young mother will collect her children, venture out the door, walk down her street in Central America to begin a one-thousand mile walk to another continent, in search of a fresh start. As student attorneys in the Immigrant Rights Clinic (IRC) at the University of Baltimore School of Law, we are the greeters at the end of that thousand-mile trek. Our work is the work of an advocate on behalf of those whose suffering, we hope, will end with a new life in the United States of America.
The Immigrant Rights Clinic (IRC), through our collaboration with Centro SOL, does some of the most fulfilling work I could hope to do as a law student. Centro SOL is a program at Johns Hopkins Hospital that focuses on providing medical services and health outreach to Latinx community in the Baltimore area. This semester, I had the opportunity to participate in the IRC’s new legal advice and counsel clinic at Johns Hopkins Hospital. On a biweekly basis I traveled to the hospital and met with Centro SOL patients in between their doctor visits. Together with my clinic partner, I interviewed the patients about their immigration history and later counseled them on their options.
The individuals we encountered at the clinic endured abuse, violence, trauma, grief, and hardship that would shock any listener. Some have cried telling their fears of threats and the dreadful conditions in their home country. Many have been persecuted because of their identity as a homosexual, as a political dissident, as a person living with HIV, or as a human who is part of some afflicted social group. Often, the governments either inflicts the harm or is unable or unwilling to protect the persons that are being harmed because of their identity in their particular group. And, within a year of entering the country, the immigrant asks the United States to provide haven for them. What I just described are the conditions that should qualify an individual for asylum, a very valuable form of relief that leads to many wonderful benefits for the immigrant. The chief of those benefits is legal status and a path to citizenship where a fresh start is possible.
Over the course of the semester I came to appreciate my role in these immigrants’ journey. As a student attorney working in the clinic, I saw my time at the hospital served as the connection that allows the immigrant to exchange their heartache for a fresh start. That connection doesn’t happen overnight, however. There is much training involved in the mechanics of finding a fresh start. As student attorneys, we are trained in the skill of client-centered interviewing, asking questions and listening for elements of a client’s story that will win their case. After the interview, we must research the law, apply the law, and write a memorandum that explains the law in user-friendly terms. That training is real-time, real-world training, and equips us with tools useful for practice in other areas of law.
And though these skills are valuable in any field of law, I have committed to practicing immigration law in the future. I have chosen to practice immigration law because it is an area of law that actively animates one of America’s core values: diversity. Immigration law allows me to personify the value of increasing the vibrancy of America’s cultural fabric. Each person I interview is another addition to the chorus of this nation. And while not every client receives the benefit of obtaining legal status in America, I am encouraged that many immigration petitions are successful. And I am encouraged because I know that the mother who ventures from home thousands of miles away will be received by us, the students of the IRC, workers at Centro Sol, and the corps of attorneys committed to this cause.
During the month of February, students from the University of Baltimore’s Low-Income Taxpayer Clinic conducted more than a half-dozen classes on financial literacy for students attending citizenship classes. During these classes, clinic students explained basic tax concepts in order to educate new immigrants to the United States as to their tax filing obligations.
Ten years after the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act became law in 2009, the pay gap between men and women has narrowed very slightly. Today, the average female worker earns about 80 cents for every dollar that a man earns, an increase of a few pennies over the decade.
Writing in the Jan. 29 issue of The Conversation, UB School of Law Venable Professor of Law Michele Gilman explores the reasons for this persistent inequity and discusses ways to close the gap. Prof. Gilman is director of the Saul Ewing Civil Advocacy Clinic and co-director of the Center on Applied Feminism. Read the entire article here.
Progress that women have made in attaining pay parity have more to do with “women’s increased educational attainment and entry into the workforce” than to anti-discrimination laws, she says. In hearing complaints of pay discrimination based on gender, she adds, “courts…
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