Each graduating class has an endless of accomplishments to celebrate. Here’s a really impressive one.
The Class of 2023, with 172 members, completed at least 52,176 hours of pro bono and public service during its time at Albany Law School.
This number encompasses all the time students provided legal assistance to small businesses, farmers, veterans, immigrants, tenants facing landlord issues, community members filing taxes, non-profit organizations, schools, and so much more.
The Edward P. Swyer Justice Center at Albany Law School administers the pro bono program and operates the law school’s five in-house clinics, which provide free legal services to eligible Capital Region residents and offers students an opportunity to gain hands-on experience.
“This year’s graduating class started law school at the height of the pandemic and overcame challenges to serve and create opportunities to improve the lives of our clients,” said Professor Ted De Barbieri, director of the Community Economic Development Clinic and the Pro Bono Program within The Edward P. Swyer Justice Center. “Our students have worked with clients navigating housing challenges, tax filing, real estate transactions, and so much more. These experiences provide hands-on learning opportunities while providing crucial legal service to our community.”
“This number is proof of Albany Law School’s commitment to educating public service-minded attorneys who learn the importance of giving back early on in their careers. Wherever their law degree takes them, their work in the clinic provides them with a foundation and the confidence to take on pro bono work for years to come,” said Professor Sarah Rogerson, Director of The Edward P. Swyer Justice Center at Albany Law School.
This is the fifth year the law school has calculated the hourly sum through a self-reporting platform. Awards are given to students who meet the following thresholds: Silver (250 hours or more), Gold (500 hours or more), and Platinum (750 hours or more). Those who complete 100 hours of service or more to the student-run Pro Bono Society earn Pro Bono Honors.
Emmalyn Blake Salazar
Julia Berry Lopez
Pro Bono Honors
Pro Bono Scholars