Fellowship recipients will work for underserved communities

(April 19, 2011) Fellowships awarded by Seattle University School of Law will allow two 2011 graduates to tackle difficult social justice problems. Anupa Iyer was awarded the Leadership for Justice Fellowship to report on human rights issues faced by women with mental disabilities in Africa. Andra Kranzler received the two-year Justice in Action Fellowship to help people of color find living wage jobs in South King County.

"These fellows exemplify the mission of Seattle University School of Law to create a more just and humane world," Dean Mark C. Niles said. "Andra and Anupa's work will make a difference to many people who have been marginalized or ignored. The law school is proud to be able to make their important work a reality. Especially in these economic times, it's crucial to make sure the most vulnerable have access to legal services and that graduates are able to pursue their passion for social justice."

Anupa IyerIyer will work with the Mental Disability Advocacy Center, an international NGO based in Budapest, Hungary, to create a report to be used to conduct advocacy before the United Nations and regional bodies. Iyer was an intern for the same organization in summer 2010. This spring she is an intern for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in Washington, D.C., on regulations relating to the Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act. She has also interned with Disability Rights Washington and the law school's International Human Rights Clinic.

Andra KranzlerKranzler's project, The Jobs and Race Equity Project, will be based at Columbia Legal Services to provide legal support to communities of color in the construction industry in South King County. She was an extern and intern with the organization on similar issues. She received the American Bar Association's 2010 John J. Curtin Scholarship on Homelessness and Poverty to work at West Tennessee Legal Services and has also worked with the Solid Ground Family Assistance Program. This spring she is a Rule 9 intern in the law school's Predatory Lending Clinic.

Seattle University School of Law is the only law school in Washington to offer a post-graduate fellowship program. Since 2009, the law school has funded the one-year Leadership for Justice Fellowship for a graduate to work with an organization on a specific social justice project involving underserved or marginalized individuals or communities.

Thanks to the generous donation from social justice champions Jim Degel, a 1980 graduate of the law school, and his wife, Jeannie Berwick, this year the law school was able to offer the two-year Justice in Action Fellowship for a graduate to work on a social justice project with a host organization in Washington.

"Funding a post-graduate fellowship allows us to provide a leadership development opportunity for the next generation of social justice lawyers while also supporting legal services organizations faced with increasingly high client needs and a scarcity of resources," Degel and Berwick said. "We hope that our gift helps to inspire others to unite as a community in order to create a future in which there is access to justice for all."