Five undergraduate students have been selected as 2019 Arthur Liman Fellows in Public Interest Law by the University’s Program in Law and Public Affairs (LAPA), according to an email statement to The Daily Princetonian from LAPA Office Manager Jennifer Bolton on Tuesday, Feb. 19.
Liman fellows receive $4,000 stipends for eight- to 10-week summer internships, involving public interest law-related work, according to the fellowship’s website. The internship may involve client-oriented work, direct-service casework, or cause-oriented advocacy.
The fellowship is made possible by a donation from the Liman Foundation under direction of University alumna Emily Liman ’85.
This year, the fellows named include three juniors, Kat Powell ’20, Peter Schmidt ’20, and Audrey Spensley ’20, as well as two sophomores, Amanda Eisenhour ’21 and Leila Ullmann ’21.
Powell is an African American studies concentrator and hails from Chicago, Ill. Her academic interests include the social, cultural, and political paths to liberation available to Black women in the Diaspora, according to LAPA’s press release.
“I’m looking to work with incarcerated women and/or survivors of domestic violence in their children,” Powell wrote in an email to the ‘Prince.’ “It’ll be a chance to explore my interest in law and how it can be used to, even in small ways, to alleviate social injustices.”
In the past, Powell’s interest in public service has primarily manifested around issues of educational inequality for under-resourced, high-achieving students.
Schmidt is originally from Clayton, Miss., concentrating in Spanish and Portuguese and pursuing a certificate in environmental studies. The LAPA press release described his academic interest as the relationship between climate change and post-colonial legacies.
In the summer of 2017, Schmidt researched the effects of global demand on the quinoa industry of the Andean plateau as a Paul E. Sigmund Scholar in Bolivia. The following summer, he developed a Markets and Bioeconomy Program at the World Wildlife Fund in Ecuador as a Streicker Fellow.
“Most of my academic exposure to questions of environmental justice has been international in scope,” Schmidt wrote to the ‘Prince’ in a statement. “I’m hoping to complement that broader perspective by working with an organization that engages with communities on a local scale.”
Audrey Spensley is a history concentrator from Avon Lake, Ohio, pursuing certificates in Spanish and American studies. In the summer of 2018, she interned as a Guggenheim Fellow in Criminal Justice at the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services.
As a Liman fellow, Spensley will be working in the Consumer Advocacy and Response Division of the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office.
“I’m really excited to learn from the staff and to help Massachusetts residents who are really struggling with the consequences of consumer fraud,” Spensley said. “I’m hoping to go to law school and to work towards criminal justice reform, so I’m hoping to familiarize myself with this work this summer.”
Spensley is a former news editor at the ‘Prince.’
Eisenhour hails from Alexandria, Va., and is a sophomore concentrator in African American studies with a certificate in Latin American studies. Her academic interests focus on the relationship between race and state violence across the United States and Latin America, according to the LAPA press release.
In the summer of 2018, Eisenhour interned in Mexico City with the non-profit GENDES, which works toward anti-carceral gender-based violence prevention.
On campus, she serves as the co-president of Students for Prison Education and Reform (SPEAR) and rebuilt the Ban the Box campaign at the University, which strives to eliminate employment and higher education opportunity discrimination against formerly incarcerated citizens.
Lastly, Ullmann is a sophomore from San Jose, Calif. The LAPA press release explains she intends to enter either the history or politics department, pursuing a certificate in African American studies and possibly dance.
Currently, Ullmann works as a legal assistant to a local public defender, leads SPEAR’s campaign voting rights initiative (alongside Eisenhour), and volunteers as a tutor in a local prison with Petey Greene.
Previously, Ullmann has served as a legal intern with UnCommon Law, an NGO that fights for those sentenced to life sentences in California. She has also conducted research on pregnancy in her county jail system and served as a public policy intern for Planned Parenthood.
Eisenhour and Ullmann did not immediately respond to request for comment from the ‘Prince.’