California Innocence Project Students

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Alexandra

My name is Alexandra, and I am a second-year student at California Western School of Law. I grew up in Western Massachusetts and received a degree in Sociology and a certificate in Criminal Justice from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. After college, I worked as a social worker for seven years. I became a social worker because I wanted a career where I could help people. I feel like law school was the natural next step for me because I could combine my passion for people with my passion for justice and the law. 

I am honored to be a part of the California Innocence Project. I am privileged to be working with such a great organization and a team of attorneys with a reputation for excellence. I am looking forward to working hard on my cases and doing my part to help free the innocent.

Alexis

My name is Alexis, and I am a a clinical intern with the California Innocence Project. In addition to volunteering with the California Innocence Project, I am a second year law student. I serve as Treasurer for the Black Law Students Association, I am a teaching fellow, and I am getting ready for my first mock trial competition! I am married to my very supportive husband, and we have two rescue dogs. We love to travel, golf, workout, and binge watch tv shows!

Arya

Hi, my name is Arya, and I am a second-year law student at California Western School of Law. I graduated from the University of California, San Diego with a Bachelor of Science in Political Science/Data Analytics with a minor in Law & Society. I decided to go to law school because of the versatility of the legal profession. I became interested in the law when I enrolled in the pre-law sequence at UCSD. I had a preconception that the law was very black and white and became instantly intrigued when I discovered the legal profession is about navigating the grey area in between. The law impacts almost all facets of one’s life and being equipped with the tools to make a positive impact inspired me to go to law school. 

I could not see a more fulfilling and impactful experience than working with the California Innocence Project to free the wrongfully convicted. Not only will I have an unparalleled experience working on real cases to make a life-changing impact, but my legal research, writing, and analytical thinking will drastically improve as a result. I am honored to be a part of such a selfless organization, and I hope you consider donating! 

Brittney

Greetings! I am Brittney, a second-year law student at California Western School of Law and one of eleven clinical interns for the California Innocence Project.

I earned my Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of San Diego before working in various compliance-centric roles for 12 years. I came to Cal West because of a lifelong dream to be a lawyer. I joined the CIP team because of a newfound–and urgent–dream to do better for this state and country we live in.

My experience with CIP has opened my eyes to the injustices of the “Justice” system while honing my legal writing, investigative, and interviewing skills. Through the practical experience offered by CIP, I will enter the next phase of my career mindful of, and thereby better prepared to avoid, the issues contributing to wrongful convictions.

Thank you for your interest in the great work this clinic does. Please help us exonerate the wrongfully convicted by donating to CIP.

Christine

Salutations! My name is Christine and I am a third-year law student at California Western School of Law. 

My previous career in the nightlife and restaurant service industry cultivated my ability to team up with multiple groups of people while serving the public. However, the 2016 election changed the trajectory of my career forever. As I saw our nation divide, I felt compelled to go back to school to learn how to heal our democracy and how to represent the interests of our environment and scientists. While in law school, I read about Kimberlé Crenshaw’s theory of intersectionality. Her powerful theory spoke strongly to me because of the interconnectedness of environmental justice and social justice. I became a social justice activist and dived heart first into pro bono work and the criminal justice world. That dive lead me to the incredible work at the California Innocence Project. 

I am honored to serve as a clinical intern because it combines my drive to reform systems of oppression and my passion to serve underrepresented communities. Underrepresented communities deserve due process and justice when systems fail them because of racial prejudices, misconduct, or ineffective assistance of counsel. I strive to bring justice equity for all Americans and our planet while maintaining an open and kind heart. Open your heart (and wallets if you can) and support the California Innocence Project’s missions.

Emma

Hi, my name is Emma, and I’m a second-year law student at California Western. I earned a Bachelor of Arts in History at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. I am currently an intern at the California Innocence Project and an associate writer for the California Western Law Review. 

I have always been interested in criminal justice and social issues. I became aware of wrongful conviction issues when I listened to the story of Curtis Flowers, a man who was tried six times for a crime he did not commit. I then researched and worked to learn about the causes and impacts of wrongful convictions. I am honored to be a part of the California Innocence project and be a part of the solution. 

Madison

Hi! My name is Madison, and I am a second-year law student at California Western School of Law. Before law school, I attended Central Washington University and earned a degree in psychology and a degree in law and justice.

My first introduction to the criminal justice system was a course at Central Washington University called Correctional Counseling. This course ultimately directed me towards pursuing a career in the criminal justice system. I befriended the professor who taught Correctional Counseling and assisted him with a publication titled “Revisiting Reasons and Kaplan 1975: Towards an Open Walls Approach to Rehabilitative Prison.” The publication sought to identify the manifest and latent functions of the current prison system and proposed solutions to reform the justice system. During my research, I learned about the ineffectiveness of our prison system. I grew passionate for prisoners “inside the walls” and dispassionate for the criminal justice system’s deterrent policies. 

It is no coincidence the passion I felt regarding prison reform would transfer onto falsely accused prisoners. I was rattled to learn about the terrible injustice that occurs to wrongfully convicted individuals. I chose to participate in the California Innocence Project to continue the fight for criminal justice reform and freeing wrongfully convicted individuals. It is an honor to be a part of a program that gives hope to those whom the criminal justice system failed.

Roxanne

Hello! My name is Roxanne, and I am a second-year law student at California Western School of Law.  

I was born and raised in Manila, Philippines, and I attended De La Salle University-Manila where I earned a bachelor’s degree in International Studies. Prior to entering law school, I served eight years of active-duty service in the United States Navy, and I am currently serving in the Reserves.  

I’ve always strived for creating meaning in my life, making a difference, and working towards effecting change. I was always drawn to speak up for the voices that are unheard. The California Innocence Project was one of the main reasons why I chose my school because when I learned about its mission, I knew I found exactly what I was looking for. I am truly honored and incredibly proud to be a part of this amazing organization. 

Sarah I.

Hi! My name is Sarah and I am a second-year law student at California Western School of Law. I attended the University of San Diego and earned a B.A. in International Relations and an M.A. in Peace and Justice Studies. 

Prior to starting law school, I worked at an immigration law firm for three years. While immigration is my passion, I came to California Western because I wanted to be a part of the California Innocence Project. I remembered hearing the story of an exoneree who was facing deportation after being released after a wrongful incarceration. I was so shocked and angered that an innocent person would face deportation after already having gone through so much injustice. I decided to turn that frustration into action and applied to California Western with the hopes of being a part of the California Innocence Project. I am so grateful to be part of such an impactful organization and I cannot wait to continue my work with the Project and hope to conduct my scholarly research on deported exonerees.  

Sara R.

Hi! My name is Sara, and I am a second-year law student at California Western School of Law. I received degrees in Criminology and Spanish language, and I came to law school with the hope of pursuing a career as a criminal defense attorney. 

I want my life to revolve around protecting defendants in our deeply flawed criminal legal system.  It’s hard to put into words what it means to work towards freeing the innocence at CIP. It is the most rewarding work, and I am grateful every day to have this opportunity. I am thrilled to work with the California Innocence Project to learn more about how to be a good advocate and how to serve my future clients. 

Every day our clients put their faith in us to fight for their freedom. Please consider donating so we can continue to change lives and change the system.

Tatum

Hi!  My name is Tatum, and I am a second-year law student at California Western School of Law.  I graduated from Arizona State University with a Justice Studies degree, and a minor in Criminal Justice.

I knew I always wanted to go to law school, but my passion for studying the law grew immensely after I participated in the Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program at ASU.  During my time with Inside-Out, I learned of the injustices many innocent people face within the criminal justice system, which inspired me to educate myself on the leading causes of wrongful convictions.  My research led me to the California Innocence Project, which is the main reason I applied to California Western.  

I wanted to be part of CIP so I could gain first-hand experience learning how to properly investigate cases and advocate zealously for clients.  Moreover, I value CIP’s mission to not only help those who are wrongfully convicted, but to implement legislative change in hopes of decreasing the amount of innocent people being wrongfully incarcerated.