For the Good of the Gulf: UNC Law Winter/Spring Break Pro Bono Project

Monday, March 14, 2011

When I first signed up to go to New Orleans to help out with Pro Bono, I wasn't sure exactly what I would be doing for the Public Defenders Office. After working in New Orleans for the past few years rebuilding homes, I was excited to begin a new adventure by helping the city out in a legal manner instead. At the Public Defenders office I worked on compiling research, writing memos, and interviewing clients to make sure that they were indigent. All of these experiences took the learning I did in my first semester 1L classes and put them to real world work.

I was excited to finally be able to gain some first hand legal experience in any way possible and I am extremely glad that I go to do so with Pro Bono. I sat in on a few court cases, including some aggravated assault and second degree murder cases just to name a few. It was a very interesting experience to watch the cases unfold and to see how the lawyers handled each situation as they came about in the courtroom. I got to watch cases that I discussed with the Public Defenders and helped compile research for unfold before my eyes.

Overall, the experience with the Public Defenders Office in New Orleans was an amazing experience and I learned a lot about the legal profession with real hands on experience. I am very grateful that I could go back and help out the city of New Orleans again in a different arena, and I hope to be able to go back in the near future to help the city out once again in any way possible.

Gideon Kaplan


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