Chief Justice Ralph D. Gants Access to Justice Fellowships Awarded to Northeastern Law Students
Left to Right: Jaclyn Blickley ’22, Hui Chen ’23, Sreenidhi Kotipalli ’23, Aly McKnight ’22 and Christina Waller ’23
09.20.21 —Northeastern Law is pleased to announce the first recipients of the Chief Justice Ralph D. Gants Access to Justice Fellowship, which honors the legacy of the late Massachusetts chief justice by continuing his commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion in the judiciary and court systems. The Gants Fellowship has a dual purpose: 1) to create a diversity pipeline to post-graduate career opportunities for qualified students who would benefit from the experience of clerking for a judge along with mentorship and programming; and 2) to assist in the expansion of diversity, equity and inclusion in the judiciary and court systems.
The Gants Access to Justice Fellowship Committee, housed at the Massachusetts Bar Association and with assistance from the Massachusetts Bar Foundation as the fiscal agent, provides programming, mentorship and award stipends of $6,000 each to eligible students who have secured a co-op with a state or federal judge in New England (Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Maine).
Five Northeastern Law students are each receiving $6,000 stipends to help cover expenses while undertaking unpaid judicial co-ops this fall. They are:
- Jaclyn Blickley ’22 on co-op with Justice David Lowy, Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (Boston)
- Hui Chen ’23 on co-op with Judge David Despotopulos, Worcester District Court (Worcester)
- Sreenidhi Kotipalli ’23 on co-op with Judge O. Rogeriee Thompson, U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit (Providence)
- Aly McKnight ’22 on co-op with Judge O. Rogeriee Thompson, U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit (Providence)
- Christina Waller ’23 on co-op with Judge O. Rogeriee Thompson, U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit (Providence)
“It is important that the folks who work inside the courthouse look like and reflect the diversity of the litigants and defendants served by the justice system,” said Professor Deborah Ramirez, who founded and leads the Gants Fellowship as she seeks to empower others to continue her late husband’s legacy of service and commitment to justice and access. “The Gants Fellowship goal is to help enhance the diversity of the judiciary by bringing students with diverse backgrounds into the courtroom.”
About Northeastern University School of Law
The nation’s leader in experiential legal education since 1968, Northeastern University School of Law offers the longest-running, most extensive experience-based legal education program in the country. Northeastern guarantees its students unparalleled practical legal work experiences through its signature Cooperative Legal Education Program. More than 1,000 employers worldwide in a wide range of legal, government, nonprofit and business organizations participate in the program. With a focus on social justice and innovation, Northeastern University School of Law blends theory and practice, providing students with a unique set of skills and experiences to successfully practice law.
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