Two Wheaton sophomores will spend the summer working alongside attorneys and law students as participants in the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland’s Summer Associate Program.
Ebony Kennedy ’19 and Caitly Reynoso ’19 have earned spots in the competitive internship program, which gives college students the opportunity to be mentored by working attorneys, as well as staff in the Legal Aid Society’s development and communications department. Both Kennedy and Reynoso will work on public relations and outreach this summer, and both received funding support from Wheaton’s Porter Cleveland Fellows Program.
“I applied for the Summer Associate Program because I’ve been thinking about law school for a while now, and I want to know what it’s like to actually practice law,” said Kennedy, an international relations major who is pursuing minors in economics, Hispanic studies and theatre. “I looked specifically toward Legal Aid because of their emphasis on community outreach, which is important to me.”
The Legal Aid Society provides high-quality, free legal assistance to low-income clients in five counties in northeast Ohio.
Reynoso, too, felt drawn to the organization because of its community service mission.
“As a member of a low-income community, I am aware of the several struggles my family and neighbors face on a daily basis,” said Reynoso, a double major in business and management and film and new media studies. “My familiarity with the hardships that the Legal Aid Society clientele face is what inclined me to pursue this internship opportunity.”
Reynoso said she is looking forward to building off of her past internship experiences, with New York-based nonprofits The Help Network and Fresh Youth Initiatives, and developing skills that will serve her well in her intended career as a broadcast journalist with a focus on supporting youth.
“I plan to use the media as a platform to expose young adults to resources that will support their growth as leaders and scholars,” she said.
Both Wheaton students are from New York City—Kennedy from Brooklyn and Reynoso from the Bronx—and will be spending the summer in Cleveland, Ohio. The Porter Cleveland Fellowship provides paid housing at Case Western Reserve University.
As communications interns, Kennedy and Reynoso will research potential funding sources, manage a donor database and help plan events, among other responsibilities, working as part of a collaborative team that includes other Summer Associates, from law schools at Case Western, Cleveland-Marshall College, Duke University, Michigan State and The University of Akron. They also will attend weekly professional development seminars.