Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Welcome to IOFA's 2012/13 Summer Interns

Over the next couple of weeks, IOFA will be welcoming a new group of interns here in our Chicago office and at our Transitions Initiative project in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  This week we are happy to introduce Amy and Laura.

Amy Gilbert, Child and Family Law Fellow, Loyola University 

Upon finishing my first year of law school at Loyola University of Chicago, I am extremely eager and excited to begin my summer (and beyond) with IOFA! I will primarily be working on the Transitions Initiative project and I will also be traveling to Ethiopia for seven weeks to implement Project Prepare. Not only am I thrilled to be able to pilot such a significant and remarkable program, but Project Prepare is also extremely important to me as I have worked with numerous teenage youth aging out of care, unprepared and forced to enter into the complex reality of adulthood. Prior to beginning law school, I worked as a paralegal for the New York Legal Aid Society representing juveniles in abuse, neglect, and delinquency proceedings in Bronx Family Court. I was amazed and inspired daily by the powerful connections I was able to make with these youth, and humbled by their strength and resiliency. I was also shocked and frustrated with the seemingly countless obstacles and hardships faced by so many of these youth. I am eager to continue working with this population, and to expand into the international field. I am also looking forward to an incredible seven weeks in Ethiopia and to combine my passion and goals with a wonderful group of motivated and hard working people at IOFA!

Laura Horner, Legal Intern, DePaul University

My name is Laura Horner and I am one of IOFA’s new legal interns for the summer.  I will be assisting IOFA in the planning and developing of the Cook County Human Trafficking Conference, which will take place on August 16th and 17th.  I am very excited about the opportunity to work with IOFA as human trafficking is an issue that I have been interested in for quite some time. This internship will give me the opportunity to learn more about the issue and to learn what steps can be taken in order to combat human trafficking.

In the fall, I will start my third year at DePaul University College of Law.   During my second year at DePaul I participated in two immigration legal clinics and loved the experience of working with immigrants.  Because of these clinics I am interested in pursuing a career in immigration law.  Through these clinics I learned that human trafficking is a major issue in immigration and one that is not easily solved.  I am hoping that this internship will help me understand the issues that arise when working with trafficked immigrants and how to help them with not just their immigration cases, but also with getting them the help they need as survivors of trafficking. 

I have only been at IOFA a few days, but I already love the experience.  I look forward to the rest of the summer and what it has in store for IOFA.

Welcome Amy and Laura!

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