The Catholic University of America



In February, CUA Law students began preparing for their volunteer
service through the DC Alternative Spring Break Program.


CUA Law Students Donate Their Free Time to Those in Need


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Instead of taking a break, six Catholic University law school students decided to give one to area social causes in need of volunteer service. 

The students signed up to donate their time and talent via the DC Alternative Spring Break Program, sponsored during the week of March 9-13 by the Catholic University’s Columbus School of Law, Georgetown University Law Center, and American University Washington College of Law.
The program provides law students with opportunities to engage in hands-on, law-related volunteer work in the DC area during their spring break. Their work serves the community, provides exposure to lawyering opportunities, build connections in the community, and accumulates student pro bono hours.
Nearly forty volunteers spread out to help with such causes and organizations as Capital Area Immigrants’ Rights (CAIR), for which training began in February; Collective Action for Safe Spaces; Mothers’ Outreach Network; the Public Justice Center’s Human Right to Housing Project; and So Others Might Eat, to name a few.  
Third-year CUA Law student Rebecca Neville (left) staffed a hotline at CAIR.
“What I really liked about CAIR was that the people who work there are so supportive and friendly,” said Neville. “And you really are helping people the whole time! Putting people in contact with their lawyers or giving them status messages. It was a truly rewarding way to spend part of my spring break.”
Working with her peers across town, CUA Law’s pro bono coordinator Jen Tschirch began planning last fall – attempting to match students’ interests with available opportunities.  
“Nine organizations hosted projects, and 39 students responded to the call to volunteer,” said Tschirch. “We didn’t have space for quite all of them, which tells us that this is a worthwhile endeavor to give students an opportunity to engage in meaningful work locally over break.”