From clerkships to clinical assistantships to working as summer
associates at firms, summer legal work helps students gain practical
skills and experiences that benefit them during law school and beyond.
This is the third profile in our 2014 series featuring the summer job
experiences of UW Law students.
Lisa Fishering ’15
Summer Law Intern, Southeast Regional Office
Federal Bureau of Prisons, Atlanta, Georgia
Describe your summer work experience.
I was assigned a wide array of tasks over the summer. In the beginning, I mainly did research for bureau attorneys. Soon after, I began doing the research and writing the litigation memos for the U.S. attorneys. When the bureau is involved in a lawsuit, bureau attorneys research the relevant law and facts of the case, and then advise U.S. attorneys on the available and appropriate responses.
I also worked to determine the validity of inmate claims of medical negligence that were in the administrative remedy stage. If I found no evidence of wrongdoing on the part of the medical staff, I would write a letter to the inmate explaining why we denied the claim.
What is the most interesting thing you worked on this summer?
Having tasks in so many different areas of law made the experience interesting. I especially appreciated going to the Federal Correctional Institution at Talladega to help gather evidence to defend the bureau in a cruel and unusual punishment suit. We interviewed the guards involved, watched videos of the incident, and looked for relevant evidence to help the U.S. attorneys refute the inmate's version of the events.
What classes were particularly useful in preparing you for the work you did this summer?
My work this summer would have been difficult without knowing how state and federal law interact, so the Law School classes that helped most were civil procedure, federal jurisdiction, torts, and constitutional law.
How do you think this work experience will shape the rest of your time at UW Law School?
My summer job raised my awareness of how many different areas of law can be implicated, no matter what type of legal work you are doing. I plan to spend my last year in law school taking courses in areas of law I have little or no exposure to so that I can get as broad a base of knowledge as possible before I graduate.
Submitted by Law School News on September 8, 2014
This article appears in the categories: Summer Job Series