Temple Law School has named two Post-Graduate Public Interest Fellows from the Class of 2021. Anna Mattis ’21 and Stephanie Curl ’21 will receive one-year paid fellowships to work with Philadelphia Legal Assistance and the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS) PA, respectively.
The Post-Graduate Public Interest Fellowship program was established in 2020 by former Temple Law School Dean and current Provost of Temple University, Gregory Mandel in response to the extraordinary challenges facing public service-minded law graduates and public interest agencies throughout the region due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Generously funded by Leonard ’68 and Lynne Barrack, Stephen and Sandy Sheller, the Rubin Fund, and other donors, the program’s goal is to support critical work by non-profit legal service agencies facing overwhelming demand while also helping Temple Law graduates with a demonstrated commitment to public service to secure employment. The Fellows are each paid for a year of work with an approved agency. The 2020 Public Interest Fellowship recipients worked at organizations including HIAS PA, Youth Sentencing Reentry Project (YSRP), and the ACLU of PA.
“Temple Law has historically attracted students who are committed to public interest work,” said interim Dean Rachel Rebouche. “It’s a mark of pride for the law school. But the pandemic has been exceptionally hard on the agencies that would typically employ these students, drying up funding sources even as need for their services has grown. Through this program, some of Temple Law’s most generous benefactors worked together to form a strategic solution – putting Temple Law graduates to work where they were needed most. It’s a really wonderful example of Temple Law ingenuity and inspiration.”
Anna Mattis LAW ‘21 and Stephanie Curl LAW ‘21 are both excited to continue in Temple Law’s tradition of service. Through the Fellowship, Curl has joined HIAS PA and Mattis has joined Philadelphia Legal Assistance.
Curl expressed an interest in immigration law even before coming to law school. Once at Temple Law, she spent her 1L summer interning at HIAS PA, working primarily with the Asylum Outreach Team. Her 2L summer was spent as a law clerk at the immigration law firm of Green & Spiegel.
“I will be working primarily to help evaluate the influx of potential cases from Afghan nationals seeking asylum in the United States after the recent exit of American troops from Afghanistan,” said Curl, who expressed excitement at returning to HIAS PA to continue to serve the immigrant community of Pennsylvania and those seeking refuge in the United States.
Mattis previously interned for Family Court Judge Ourania Papademetriou in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, Women Against Abuse Legal Center, and the Defender Association of Philadelphia. At Temple Law, she completed the Temple Legal Aid Family Law Litigation Clinic with Professor Sarah Katz.
“I started in the Family Law Unit at Philadelphia Legal Assistance in November after being selected for the Temple Law Post-Graduate Public Interest Fellowship,” she explained. “My work focuses on representing clients in Protection from Abuse, Child Custody, and Support cases that involve domestic violence.”
Through the continuation of the Post Grad Public Interest Fellowship, Temple Law’s firm commitment to our graduates and community mirrors the dedication of the Fellows to create a more just and equitable future.
“Anna and Stephanie have demonstrated an exemplary commitment to serving their communities of concern, and will be outstanding Temple Lawyers,” said Jorge Godoy, director of public interest programs in Temple Law’s Office of Career Services. “We’re grateful to the supporters of the Post-Graduate Public Interest Fellowship Program for making sure they are in position to do this vital work.”
Visit our website to learn more about Public Interest and Social Justice at Temple Law.