New England Law | Boston students perform public service work through clinical courses, student groups, and employment, both paid and volunteer.
Students may obtain transcript recognition for approved public service legal work through the Public Service Transcript Notation Program.
Julie McGinnis (Class of 2010)
My experience at New England Law | Boston introduced me to the good, the bad and the ugly sides of public interest law. During first year, my Legal Research and Writing professor helped me get a summer internship at the Massachusetts Attorney General's Office. I worked with the Environmental Crimes Strike Force supporting the division chief by researching administrative inspections, regulations, and administrative history. Best of all, I assisted the Appeals Division Chief by contributing to the Commonwealth's U.S. Supreme Court Brief for Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts. My next public interest adventure was during my second year when I took the Public Interest Clinic and Seminar. I was able to choose where I wanted to receive my clinical experience. I chose to work at the Church Street Clinical Law Office, where I worked alongside New England Law | Boston professors and practicing attorneys. I represented clients who needed help with divorces, unemployment benefits as well as social security benefits. This was extremely valuable real-world experience which gave me a realistic view of what constitutes public interest law. I worked on an unemployment case, investigating the merits and the client’s eligibility. I also worked on social security disability cases and family law cases, interviewing clients, investigating their cases and appearing in court under Supreme Judicial Court Rule 3:03, the student practice rule. The judge was a New England Law alum, and was extremely nice to me. The following summer, I was lucky enough to get another internship at the Attorney General's Office. I worked for the Trial Division Team in the Government Bureau where I researched wrongful conviction statutes, assembled a Witness List, decided on a case theory, and began preparing for a trial. In addition, I wrote a memo for a class action involving the Federal Arbitration Act. I was most excited to attend numerous depositions, hearings, and motions. I feel very fortunate to have been given the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in several different areas of the public interest world. I think the most valuable lessons I learned were not only what I like about public interest law, but also learning what I don't like. My professors were always more than happy to help, and played an important role in guiding me toward a career in public interest law. (March, 2010)