Student Internship Stories: Ahyoung Shin (CAS ‘22), Volunteer Lawyers Project (VLP)

CCD: Tell us about your experience. What were your responsibilities?

AS: Last summer, I had the opportunity to intern as a Student Intern at the Volunteer Lawyers Project (VLP) in Boston, MA. VLP is a non-profit organization that provides legal aid to lower-income people in the Greater Boston area. Within the various units that VLP has, I interned for the Family Law and Guardianship Unit (FLGU).  As an intern, I accomplished various tasks, such as drafting legal documents,  interacting with clients, and present cases at weekly case review meetings.

CCD: How did you get the opportunity? What resources at BU or elsewhere did you use?

AS: I really wanted an internship in a legal environment this summer, so I searched online (Google) about undergraduate summer legal internship opportunities.

CCD: What was the best thing about the experience? What was the worst?

AS: Out of all my responsibilities, I personally enjoyed drafting legal documents the most because it was the most substantive work I could do for the clients. As for the least appealing task, there were times when a case would, unfortunately, have to close because the client would not be responsive to VLP’s efforts to reach them. I fully understand that every client goes through different and difficult circumstances, but my frustration at these closed cases was inevitable.  

CCD: What is the biggest takeaway from your internship position?

AS: Through multiple interactions with clients, who mostly come from a lower-income background, I learned that there are so many people out there who are in a less fortunate situation than I am in. I always have to be grateful for the situation I am in because there will always be people who are going through worse circumstances. This internship has made me more interested in working in the field of public interest law. Whatever career path I lead in the future, I hope to volunteer or even work at a legal aid organization like VLP to help those in need. The work that VLP does is truly inspiring and impactful to those who receive assistance.

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