At the Intersections of Legal Aid and Policymaking at Georgetown Law’s Criminal Defense and Prisoner Advocacy Clinic

December 6, 2021

Washington DC is an amazing and vibrant city. DC is known as the political hub of our country, full of opportunities for people interested in politics and policy. Although that is not all that is to DC, there is a lot more. DC is full of yummy food, amazing art, and some of the best museums in the country. DC is home to some of the most iconic buildings in the country and you can find history in every corner of DC.

I am working in Georgetown Law’s Criminal Defense and Prisoner Advocacy Clinic. In the clinic, we handle IRA (people who got convicted while they were under the age of 24) and passionate release cases, we also represent people who are unable to afford professional legal help. I work as an investigator in the clinic. My job includes going into the field collecting information about the cases, interviewing witnesses, and taking statements from them. I also work with my supervising attorney to prepare defense theories for the cases we are handling. I meet new people at my job every day and my next day is always different from the previous one. Working in Georgetown Law is an amazing opportunity especially, if you are planning to go to law school and want to work in the criminal justice field. It has been perfect for me because I am planning to go to law school and work as a public defender after graduating from the law school. 

My professor for US foreign policy in the Middle East works in the Senate and in every class, he brings a policymaker, who was directly or indirectly responsible for making that specific policy, we are discussing in the class that day. For example, during our Iraq War lecture, we met Douglas Feith, who was the Undersecretary of Defense for policy during the Bush administration. I also met the NSC Director under the Trump administration and many other high-level State Department officials. This kind of experience is only possible in DC, where you can learn about policy and meet people who are responsible for making that policy and understand the reasoning behind that specific policy from their perspective.