ONTARIO, Calif., March 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Following the Summer 2007
opening of its in-house clinic, the Disability Rights Legal Center, the
University of La Verne (ULV) College of Law announces the opening of its
Justice & Immigration Clinic (JIC), the second clinic to be housed on the
law school's Ontario, Calif. campus. Both clinics allow students the
opportunity to work on real cases for clients under the supervision of a
"The Justice and Immigration Clinic is specifically devoted to taking
on asylum cases," said Professor Diane Uchimiya, the JIC's Clinical Law
Professor and Supervising Attorney. "The clients who are referred to us
will be applying for asylum in the immigration court. A grant of asylum
allows an individual to remain in the United States lawfully because of
past persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution in their home
countries on account of the individual's race, religion, nationality,
political opinion or membership in a particular social group."
According to Professor Jane Egly, ULV College of Law's director of
clinical programs, the new immigration clinic is a win-win. "Our Justice
and Immigration Clinic benefits both our law students and the community.
Our students gain the knowledge, experience and practical skills they need
to grow as legal professionals while asylum applicants receive pro bono
legal assistance with the process to apply for permanent legal residency."
The law school also hopes the added clinic will attract prospective
students to its campus.
"Clinical offerings consistently rank high among the factors
prospective law students consider when they choose a law school," said
Alexis Thompson, ULV College of Law's assistant dean of admissions. "In
fact, clinical programs are right up there among other top factors,
including a law school's location and the reputation of its academic
programs and curricula."
In its inaugural semester, the Justice & Immigration Clinic has
accepted three pro bono cases. Each case involves a Latin American who was
a minor at the time he or she attempted to enter the United States, and was
not accompanied by an adult family member. All three individuals have been
released into the custody of family members who have a lawful immigration
status and who have agreed to support the individuals throughout the
immigration court proceedings. The cases are scheduled to be heard in the
Los Angeles Immigration Court in April.
To prepare for the hearings, the JIC's law students will work in pairs,
spending an average of 25-30 hours per week on their assigned cases. Over
the course of the semester, each pair of students will:
-- Conduct client interviews
-- Investigate facts
-- Prepare a case plan, legal strategy and evidence chart
-- Draft affidavits
-- Prepare an asylum application
-- Prepare the applicant's document submission
-- Write a trial brief
-- Prepare opening and closing arguments
-- Prepare and conduct direct and cross-examinations
-- Prepare witnesses to testify
-- Conduct weekly status meetings
-- Evaluate options and make decisions
-- Conduct a complete moot of a hearing or asylum interview, and
-- Maintain a case file
"The opening of the Justice and Immigration Clinic presents many
opportunities for local professionals in the legal and medical field to get
involved with pro bono work," said Uchimiya. "We are currently seeking
attorneys, mental health examiners, medical practitioners, and country
condition experts to assist students in building their cases."
For more information about the University of La Verne College of Law's
legal clinics, please contact the law school's Director of Clinical
Programs, Professor Jane Egly, at (909) 460-2042. For more information
about admission to the law school, call the Admissions Office at (909)
460-2001 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Professor Diane Uchimiya
A specialist in immigration law, Professor Uchimiya joined the College
of Law in July 2005. Prior to her post at ULV, she was a teaching fellow at
the Center for Applied Legal Studies at Georgetown University Law Center.
While there, she co-taught the clinical class and served as the attorney of
record and advisor to student interns representing clients in immigration
and asylum matters. Before entering teaching, she worked as an immigration
lawyer in Virginia, where she coauthored "The Right to Counsel in
Immigration Matters" with Malea Kiblan. Professor Uchimiya is a member of
the California and Washington D.C. bar associations as well as the American
Immigration Lawyers Association.
About the University of La Verne College of Law
Located in Ontario, Calif., the University of La Verne College of Law
serves over four million people as the only ABA-approved law school in
Inland Southern California and an additional 2.2 million people in San
Gabriel Valley and Eastern Los Angeles County. For more information about
the College of Law, please call (909) 460-2001 or visit the Web at
The University of La Verne College of Law was provisionally approved by
the American Bar Association on February 13, 2006.
SOURCE University of La Verne College of Law