Interns and Volunteers

 

The Sugar Law Center provides internships for law students and opportunities for volunteering throughout the year. We strive to offer a highly educational and rewarding experience. We generally have between two and six interns and volunteers at any given time.

If you are interested in volunteering or being an intern, please email a resume, a writing sample, and a short paragraph about why you and Sugar Law would fit well together to mail@sugarlaw.org.

Below are descriptions of our prior interns and comments on their experiences.

2014

Pardis Delijani
Summer. Second-year law student, University of Maine School of Law

Jack Stride
Summer. Second-year law student, University of Indiana Mauer School of Law

Nicholas Klaus
Summer. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School

Kelly Johnson
Spring/Fall. Graduate, Wayne State University Law School

Adam Taub
Spring/Summer. Graduate, University of Connecticut School of Law

Alyssa Pillow Petroni
Spring. Graduate, University of Michigan Law School

Jonathan Hordos
Winter/Spring. Third-year law student, Wayne State University Law School

2013

Kathleen Garbacz
Summer. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School

Connor Brown
Summer. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School

Vincent Schraub
Winter/Spring. Third-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

James “Wade” Porter 
Winter/Spring. Third-year law student, Thomas Cooley Law School

Robbie Berlin
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Jennifer Burger
Winter/Spring. Undergraduate student at University of Michigan-Flint
Jennifer worked with us through the Semester in Detroit program at the University of Michigan.

2012

Bonsitu Kitaba
Fall. Second-year law student.  Wayne State University Law School

Melissa Brown Knox
Fall. Second-year law student.  Wayne State University Law School

Nicole MacMillan
Fall. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Vincent Schraub   
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Kathleen Marie Quackenbush
Fall. Second-year law student.  Wayne State University Law School

Jason M. Hoskins
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Andrea D’Agostino
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Robbie Berlin  
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Sarah Haidar
Fall.  Fourth-year law student.  Filière Francophone de Droit (Beirut, Lebanon)
Sarah joined the Law Center through a generous funding provided by the Ford Foundation.  She is a graduate of Lycée Franco – libanais Verdun de Beyrouth.

Laura Campbell
Summer. Second-year law student.  Michigan State University College of Law

Megan Boelstler
Summer. Second-year law student.  University of Indiana School of Law

Vincent Schraub
Summer. Second-year law student.  University of Detroit Mercy Law School

Andrea D’Agostino
Summer. Second-year law student.  University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Kathleen Marie Quackenbush
Summer. Second-year law student.  Wayne State University Law School

Luciana Olivera
Summer.  LLM graduate from Wayne State University School of Law.
Luciana is a law student graduate from the Faculdades Metropolitanas Unidas, (Sao Paulo Brazil)

Sarms Jabra
Summer. Second-year law student.  DePaul University College of Law

Zanita Mae Clipper         
Winter/Spring & Fall. Third-Year law student. University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Matthew Rosenthal       
Winter/Spring, Summer & Fall. Third-year law student.  Thomas Cooley Law School

Joe Langevin
Winter/Spring. Fourth-year undergraduate student. Wayne State University

William Ahee    
Winter/Spring. Fourth-year undergraduate student. Wayne State University

Justin Maike   
Winter/Spring.  Fourth-year undergraduate student. University of Michigan – Dearborn

2011

Joe McGuire
Fall. Graduate of Wayne State University Law School     

Victor Walbridge             
Fall.  Second-year law student.  Wayne State University Law School

Zanita Mae Clipper
Fall. Second-year law student.  University of Detroit Mercy School of 

Emily Patterson                
Summer.  Second-year law student.  Wayne State University Law School

James Wade Porter
Summer. Second-year law student. Thomas Cooley Law School

Ryanne Exposito             
Summer.  Second-year law student. University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Wade Rosenthal-Schrieber       
Summer. Second-year law student.  City University of New York School of Law

Erin Joyce Reed               
Summer.  Fourth-year undergraduate.  University of Michigan
Erin worked at our offices through the University of Michigan’s Semester in Detroit program.   

Megan Boelstler              
Summer.  Second-year law student. University of Indiana School of Law (offsite)
Megan is a graduate of Adrian College.

Mariel Block      
Winter/Spring.  Second-year law student.  University of Michigan

Kathleen Borowski
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student.  University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Phyllis Jeden      
Winter/Spring.  Second-year law student.  Wayne State University Law School

Gregory Kernasovsky     
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student. Wayne State University Law School

Patrick O’Meara              
Winter/Spring.  Second-year law student. University of Detroit Mercy Law School

Brandon Stump
Winter/Spring.  Graduate of the University of West Virginia College of Law

Chinyere Ezie    
Fall. Graduate of the Columbia University Law School. (offsite)

Rachel Walker
Winter/Spring.  Fourth-year undergraduate. University of Michigan.
Rachel joined the Law Center through University of Michigan’s Semester in Detroit program.

Sean Ryan
Winter/Spring.  Third-year undergraduate.  Macalester College

2010

Patrick O’Meara
Fall. Second-year law student. University of Detroit Mercy Law School

Matthew Clark
Summer. Second-year law student. Wayne State University Law School

James Morgan
Summer & Fall. Graduate of Florida International University Law School

Anlyn Addis
Summer. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Anlyn is a College of Wooster graduate where she majored in Sociology. She has a passion for social justice issues, and is interested in human and civil rights law.

 

Liz Young
Summer & Fall. Second Year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Liz is a Sociology and Education major with a degree from Beloit College in Wisconsin. She’s now a student at Wayne State Law. Her favorite hobbies include long walks, sewing, and crossword puzzles.

 

Emily Kidston
Summer. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Emily Kidston graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.A. in Psychology and History and is pursuing her J.D. at Wayne State University Law. She is interested in Labor law and alternative dispute resolution, and enjoys fluffy bunny rabbits (particularly her fluffy bunny named Valhalla).

 

Molly Alpert
Winter/Spring & Summer. Third-year law student. University of Detroit Mercy School of Law

Terry Fernandez
Summer. Third-year law student. Florida International University Law School (offsite)

Justin Schwerling
Winter/Spring. Third-year. Florida International University College of Law (offsite)

Lauren Holden
Winter/Spring.  Fourth-year undergraduate at University of Michigan
Lauren joined the Law Center through the Semester in Detroit program at UM.

Patrick Cooper-McCann
Winter/Spring.  Fourth-year undergraduate at University of Michigan
Patrick joined the Law Center through the Semester in Detroit program at UM.

Emily Krol
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Emily graduated from Boston College with degrees in Philosophy and Communications. Her overall focus was human rights and social justice, particularly as they relate to social movement theory. Emily has worked as a union organizer in the past, and is currently attending Wayne State University Law School. She is happiest when living a simple, natural, sustainable lifestyle, and she believes that community-inspired values are important to sustain a happy, healthy lifestyle for everyone.

2009

Jason Eggert
Fall. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Jason is a former high school teacher, an associate editor on the Journal of Law and Society, and the Vice President of the Wayne State University Law School chapter of the National Lawyers Guild. His interests include the Fourteenth Amendment, Public Defense Reform, developing education as a civil right, and incorporating an interdisciplinary approach to the law to achieve broader social justice.

Jason Wade
Fall. Third-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Jason writes: “Sugar Law is extremely privileged to be graced by the presence of Jason Wade, one of the highest caliber law students the Center has ever seen. For over fifteen years Jason has been a community and union organizer working on civil rights and social justice issues.

“In addition to his selfless work in the community, Jason has been an industrial electrician in Detroit, Michigan, for over ten years. Working mainly in the automotive industry, he saw first hand the human effects of America’s trade liberalization and the Midwest’s de-industrialization. After years of recurring lay-offs due to the factories he had once had a hand in building and retooling being shuttered, Jason decided to return to school.”

Joseph Karam
Fall & Winter/Spring 2010. Graduate of Michigan State University College of Law
Joey recently graduated from Michigan State University where he completed both his JD and MBA. He is interested in Labor and Employment Law. Joey comes to Sugar Law after previously interning for the Senate of Canada and the UAW.

 

Leslie Pollock
Fall. Second-year law student, University Detroit Mercy Law School
Leslie graduated from Oakwood University with a B.S. in Psychology. She is an active member of Black Law Student Association and her interests include Labor and Employment and Civil Rights Law.

 

 

Kelly Steffens
Winter/Spring & Summer. Second-year law student, Thomas M. Cooley Law School
Kelly graduated with a degree in International Studies from Michigan State University, focusing her studies on Latin America and International Development. Kelly’s interests include immigration and human rights law.

 

Clarence Walsh
Summer & Winter/Spring 2011. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy School of Law
Clarence graduated from Cornell College with a BA in History and minor in Biology. He is a member of the Dean’s Honor Society and is interested in Labor and Employment Law.

 

Choi Portis
Summer. Second-year law student, Thomas M. Cooley Law School
Choi graduated from Eastern Michigan University with a B.S. in Public Law and Government, minor in Psychology. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

 

 

Phyllis Jeden
Summer.  Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Phyllis is an incoming member of the Moot Court at Wayne State University Law School and serves as the president of the WSU American Civil Liberties Union Law School Chapter. Her interests include studying the correlation between civil rights and mental health and tracking the origins and effects of violent propaganda.

“I was nervous to do a internship at an organization my Professor referred to as the ‘little engine that could’, an organization I have much respect for. Much to my delight, not only is everyone so incredibly friendly, they are also an empathetic group willing to walk me through whatever I need help with.

I feel a great sense of pride in where I have been working and the work I have been helping with. The efforts of this organization are vital to ensuring the basic rights of workers and, even though they are small in numbers, the Sugar Law Center makes up for it with vast experience, skills and passion. This has been a priceless learning experience and the best atmosphere I could have to be introduced to the practice of law in the name of public interest. I am grateful for this opportunity and hope to have as wonderful of an environment to work in in the future.” – Phyllis

Marissa Hanna
Summer. Graduate from the University of Michigan
Marissa is a recent graduate of the University of Michigan, having majored in Psychology and Spanish. She has been committed to social justice through her work with the humanitarian organization The Quito Project and her advocacy for prison reform at the American Friends Service Committee’s Michigan Criminal Justice Program. She saw the opportunity to explore the legal side of social justice at Sugar Law as well as the ins and outs of nonprofit management.

Ron Warner
Summer. Law Student, Florida International University, College of Law (Offsite)

Victor J. Pelaez
Spring & Summer. Law Student, Florida International University, College of Law (Offsite)

Jerome C. Williams Jr.
Summer. Third-year law student, Ohio Northern University School of Law (Offsite)

Victor J. Pelaez
Summer. Law Student, Florida International University, College of Law

Ibaa Nawash
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy Law School
Ibaa attended Baldwin-Wallace College where she studied Political Science with minors in International Studies and History. She was a member of the Middle Eastern Student Alliance and the Muslim Student Association.

Elizabeth Bishop
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy Law School

Carolina Rizzo
Winter/Spring. Recent graduate from University of Michigan
Carolina interned at Sugar Law through the Semester in Detroit Program. She begins law school at American University this fall.

2008

Elisa Gomez
Fall. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Elisa graduated from the School of Diplomacy and International Relations at Seton Hall University in 2007. A National Lawyers Guild member, Elisa’s interests include public disability benefits, employment rights; landlord/tenant law reform; and civil rights and liberties.

Tanya Bowers
Fall.  Second-year law student, Wayne State Law School

Matthew Goodman
Summer. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Matthew earned his BA from McGill University in political science. A member of Wayne State University’s Jewish Law Student Association and HIV/AIDS advocacy group, Matthew is interested in several areas of law, including civil rights, labor law and properties.

Steven Rush
Summer. Second-year law student, Gonzaga University
Haywood Burns Fellow, sponsored by the National Lawyers Guild
Steven earned a degree in Political Science at the University of Utah in 2006, focusing his studies on American democracy. In the first-year law student moot court at Washington State’s Gonzaga University, Steven and his teammate made it to the quarter-finals.

Tanya Singh
Summer. Second-year law student, University of Detroit Mercy
Tonya graduated from the University of Western Ontario in 2007 with majors in Political Science and Art History. She attends the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, and served as the 2L Day Class Representative for the Student Bar Association (SBA).

Stephen Galgan
Summer. Second-year law student, Appalachian School of Law
Stephen was born and raised in Metro Detroit and attended University of Detroit Jesuit High School. He received a B.A in European History at Michigan State University in 2004, and is a member of Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity and the Democratic Law Society.

Andrew Smith
Summer. First-year law student, Wayne State Law School

Tomas Rinaldi
Summer. Law student, Stetson University College of Law (Offsite)

Nicole Armstrong
Summer. Law student, Stetson University Law School (Offsite)

Robert Brock
Summer. Law student, Stetson University Law School (Offsite)

Kerrie Kennedy
Winter/Spring. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Kerrie received her BA in Anthropology with a minor in Peace & Conflict Studies.

Molly Harris
Winter/Spring.  Third-year law student, University of Detroit School of Law
Molly graduated from the Honors Program at Eastern Michigan University where she received her BA in History. She was a member of the Federal Bar Association and the International Law Society.

2007

Molly Harris
Fall.  Second-year law student, University of Detroit School of Law
Molly graduated from the Honors Program at Eastern Michigan University where she received her BA in History. She was a member of the Federal Bar Association and the International Law Society.

Miguel Garcia
Fall. Second-year law student, Thomas M. Cooley Law School
Before coming to Sugar Law, Miguel was an Officer in the Navy and has returned to military service since.

Amy Kwiatkowski
Fall. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Amy graduated from Michigan State University with high honors, majoring in Human Resource Management, and served on the editorial board of the Wayne State University Law Review.

Michael Akins
Fall. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
A graduate of Flint Northern High School, Michael majored in Labor Studies at Wayne State. Michael has experience as a student attorney at the Free Legal Aid Clinic, a paralegal for a civil plaintiffs’ firm, a research intern with the HERE International Union, a pastry chef, and an urban spelunker.

Stuart Shoup
Summer. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Stuart plans on using his law degree to work for social and economic justice in the Detroit area. Stuart grew up in Taylor, Michigan. At Eastern Michigan University he majored in History, with a minor in Sociology.

Nicholas Sissen
Summer. Second-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Nick attended Fordson High School in East Dearborn and graduated from Michigan State University in 2004 with a degree in Political Theory and Constitutional Democracy.

Andrea Carter
Summer. Third-year law student, Thomas Jefferson School of Law
Haywood Burns Fellow, sponsored by the National Lawyers Guild
Andrea studied Political Science as an undergraduate, with East Asian Studies and Sociology minors. She speaks Spanish and has worked and studied abroad in China and Latin America.

Tony Paris
Winter/Spring. Third-year law student, Wayne State University Law School
Tony is now a staff attorney at Sugar Law.

2006

Donna Mallonee
Fall.  Graduate Michigan State University College of Law (Offsite)

2005

Katie Sutton
Fall. Third-year law student, Wayne State University
Katie was Vice Chair of the Free Legal Aid Clinic, Inc., as well as President of the Wayne Labor Law Association. At the Law Center, Katie worked on the Detroit Living Wage Ordinance and WARN Act litigation.

Stephen Stine
Summer. University of Michigan Law School and School of Information
Stephen’s research for Sugar Law included collecting links and summarizing contents of union and labor law resources, and producing a prototype for a one-stop online union and labor law informational resource.

Heather Freiburger
Summer. Second-year law student, University of Michigan
Haywood Burns Fellow, sponsored by the National Lawyers Guild
Following undergraduate studies in Psychology and Sociology, with a focus on criminal justice, Heather volunteered with the Michigan Battered Women’s Clemency Project. At the U of M, Heather was actively involved in the Phi Delta Phi legal fraternity. Heather’s work for Sugar Law supported the Living Wage project.

“I had been anxiously awaiting this summer in hopes of finding some people like me: People with a legal education but a desire to do something more than fight for the rights of business…People who wanted to fight for (of all things) people. And suffice it to say, I met those people…

I think I have a greater understanding now; the ability to put myself out there and help with the things that I am able to help with, while at the same time knowing that the weight of the world does not fall squarely on my shoulders—I am not responsible for it all. That’s where it comes in handy having fellow staff members, like here at the Sugar Law Center. I hope I am always so blessed.” – Heather

“I have enjoyed my experience here at the Sugar Law Center. Working on issues designed to help others has been a welcome contrast to the competitiveness of the first year of law school. The attorneys and staff here are genuinely interested in helping people and making a positive impact on society.

The idea that a full time worker should be able to make enough money for themselves and their families to live above the poverty level is fundamental. The Living Wage Movement is working towards the goal of making this a reality for many people, and I am glad to have had the opportunity to participate in it.” – Cara

Kimberly Saks
Summer. Third-year law student, University of Detroit-Mercy
Voice for Justice Fellow, sponsored by the University of Detroit-Mercy School of Law
Recipient of the Jerome P. Cavanaugh Scholarship recognizing outstanding promise for the study of law, Kim was a member of the UDM Student Bar Association Board of Governors and the UDM NLG Chapter as well as a founding member of the UDM School of Law Democrats.

2004

Michelle Hodkin
Summer and Fall.  Second-year law student, Michigan State University
Equal Justice America Legal Services Fellowship
Recipient of the Bernard J. Fieger full scholarship for trial practice students, Michelle completed a two-year course of study as a participant in the Geoffrey Fieger Trial Practice Institute.

Derek Watkins
Summer. Third-year law student, Wayne State University
Equal Justice America Legal Services Fellowship
Active in the student chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, Derek provided valuable work for us over several periods. In the winter of 2001-02, he updated a state environmental law reference. The following summer he received a Haywood Burns Fellowship and Equal Justice America Legal Services Fellowship.

Tim Fallon
Summer. Third-year law student, Loyola-New Orleans School of Law
Public-interest Grant, Loyola-New Orleans Gillis Long Poverty Law Center
Founding member and president of Loyola’s National Lawyers Guild chapter, Tim worked for the SLC on WARN Act updates, a history of the Michigan and environmental justice movement, and Living Wage litigation.

Melissa Sachs
Summer.  Second-year law student, University of Pittsburgh School of Law
Co-president of the Pitt student chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, Melissa was also an active member in the Pitt Women’s Law Association.

Dan Rubin
Summer 2004: Third-year law student, University of Michigan Law School
Haywood Burns Fellow, sponsored by the National Lawyers Guild
Experienced with research and advocacy on behalf of grade-school children involved in the school disciplinary process, Dan worked at Sugar conducting research on Environmental Justice and WARN Act cases.

Sarah Rohrbeck
Summer.  Second-year law student, University of Illinois’ College of Law
Equal Justice America Legal Services Fellowship
Sarah came to us after being active in her school’s chapter of the Innocence Project, an organization working to exonerate death row inmates through the use of DNA evidence.

2003

Melissa Gertz
Summer. Second-year law student, Rutgers School of Law
Haywood Burns Fellow, sponsored by the National Lawyers Guild
Equal Justice America Legal Services Fellowship

A Board member of the Rutgers Student Lawyers Guild chapter, and an active member of the Rutgers Affirmative Action Mobilization Committee.

John Hardenbergh
Summer. Third-year law student, University of Arizona College of Law
Haywood Burns Fellow, sponsored by the National Lawyers Guild
As co-Chair of the U of A National Lawyers Guild chapter, John helped organize legal observer trainings and other educational events. John also volunteered as an organizer for Tucson’s Border Action Network and helped to organize Section 8 tenants throughout Arizona. During his time as an intern at the Sugar Law Center, John worked on WARN litigation and a WARN Act newsletter for state officials. He also contributed to a review of state and federal environmental justice statutes.

“I began law school with a strong belief that justice is not a commodity, that everyone is entitled to fairness under the law, and to just law. But what I found was a system of class, race, and gender hierarchies disguised under a cloak of tradition and precedent and constructions of neutral and reasonable people, and people wanting-–expecting-–to profit off of it. And no one there to challenge that. When I did, my critical thinking was regarded as nothing more than an academic exercise, my idealism naive.

At the Sugar Law Center, I learned a whole lot about the living wage movements across the country, the abuse of tax increment financing through corporate and municipal alliances, and the ridiculous water crisis in Michigan.

While all of this newfound knowledge is important, what I will take away with me most is the reassurance that I am not crazy. That there really are lawyers, legal workers, and law students out there determined to fight for progressive change. There are genuine, impassioned educators and activists who, like me, happen to choose the law as their weapon of choice, and it is with these types of people with whom I would like to work long-term. Kudos to the SLC and the NLG for helping keep my sanity and perspective and passion amidst the strong forces at law school trying to take me to the Dark Side.” – Melissa

“In law school, we’re taught that hierarchy is a natural phenomenon and that it is a healthy byproduct of legal education and practice. We’re expected to structure our lives according to the principles of hierarchy….We’re taught to expect the same thing from our professional lives.

This is why my experiences at the Sugar Law Center have been so refreshing. Not only are the legal workers, lawyers, and community organizers dedicated to eradicating hierarchy and oppression in the community, they approach hierarchy within the office with the same seriousness of purpose. Working here has given me hope that lawyers can work together with community organizers and legal workers from a basis of mutual respect and together can create progressive change in the community.” – John