Thanks and time to share

Thanks, danke, gracias!  To every person who participated in the 7th Incoming Student Community Service Project!  Representatives from the different sites reported huge satisfaction with all of your hard work.  We hope you will remember this event whenever you are a bit stressed but also when you ponder the role of attorneys in communities.

Take a few moments to enjoy and share the experience

Pamela Robinson

Live from IRMO and the Lexington County Library

As always this group gets to bask in the air conditioning and enjoy the company of a good book!

Lexington County Library Irmo Branch

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Team at SC Legal Services checks in!

The team at SC Legal Services finally checked in!  Slight glitch with uploading photos!  thanks for the clean cars!

SC Legal Services

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Moving stuff at St Lawrence Place

This looks like it was a hot and messy job but everyone seems to happy to help!

St Lawrence Place

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Habitat ReStore

The Habitat Re-Store is a non-profit in West Columbia established to assist in funding Habitat for Humanity Homes. The store, which operates with a consignment structure, receives donations from homes and businesses across the Midlands with furniture and supplies they no longer need. Will Byrd, the store’s Volunteer Coordinator, exemplifies both the company’s and lawschool’s dedication to community outreach. A 2013 graduate of the University of South Carolina, Byrd knew his top priority before finding a “long-term job” was to work for a non-profit, and thus began working at the Re-Store about a year and a half ago. The company, founded in 1976 in Georgia, returns 96 cents from every dollar received back into its community programs. This statistic is what lead another employee named Mark to choose working for Habitat for Humanity over other local non-profits.

Our law students were able to see first hand how important giving back to the community is, while also building friendships with each other. They helped throughout the store organizing and cleaning merchandise, loading up cars with furniture for customers, and helping to sort incoming donations. Habitat for Humanity requires that those who receive homes pay for them through “sweat equity,” which means that the students worked alongside the very people who were benefitting from the store (and company’s) purpose.

What does Pro Bono mean to you?

“Giving up your time and services without receiving something in return, yet getting satisfaction in knowing you’re doing something for the greater good.” –Jerisha Dukes, Hopkins, South Carolina, University of South Carolina

“We’ve been given a great opportunity in law school to do good, and it’s nice to have a chance to help others in need.” –Matt Jackson, Richmond, Virginia, University of Virginia

Habitat ReStore

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Disciplinary Counsel checks in!

Confidential files, sorted, boxed and shredded!  What a team!

Disciplinary Counsel

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May I have the envelope, please @SC Appleseed Legal Justice Center

SC Appleseed Legal Justice Center

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Homeworks (avoiding the poison ivy)

WLTX followed this team!

Zach Porfiris: “Pro bono work means volunteering and giving back to the community. It’s a good way to stay involved, especially while in law school.”

Tina Abassi: 

Homeworks Video

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Robert Franklin: “Pro bono means giving back to the community in some way. It supports the school and obviously my education.”

Powell: “Homeworks is a 501©3 nonprofit. We really do three things:repair the homes of elderly homeowners, we assist youth in their development anywhere from middle school all the way up through college students and we enable communities to care for their own members by bringing a diverse group. Really it is a collision of every home site of corporations, foundations, nonprofits, schools, coming together to serve one home owner at a time. Today the law students are working at the home of Mr. David at his home. Mr. David is not mobile, he is in a wheelchair…the students are prepping the house working on the safety and sanitation issues outside the home. This will prepare us to bring a fuller group of volunteers in the next two months back to this home to do some much more structural repairs. Having been with Homeworks for a couple years now, you all represent that missing category of mentor that an organization like Homeworks needs. Our organization works with young adults and often times a mentor comes and work with us are either retired. Young professionals, college students, those studying in post graduate work that have a path that they have set in their life, those are the ones that intersect our youth. Having law students work with us would make a huge difference, and it would be great.”

Meredith Snapps: “Homeworks is a faith based nonprofit of Columbia, SC, that shows that love and service to others by repairing the homes of homeowners in need. It helps youth in their development and empowers the community.”

Seth Stoughton: “Pro bono is a commitment to public service. In the legal profession it focuses on the delivery of legal services, but pro bono as a concept is much bigger than that. It’s about giving back to the communities where we work. It is about understanding different aspects about people in those communities in a way that as a lawyer or as a professor, I can’t do by just sitting in my office.”

Matt Young: “Pro bono work means giving back to the community. I grew up with a family that was very involved in community service so when I was deciding which law school to attend, the Pro Bono office at USC was the tipping point. Pro Bono work is about putting others before yourself and giving any time that you can to help as many people as possible. Practicing law at its core is a civil service and Pro Bono work helps us all give back.

“Just come to the office and speak with Miss Pam! She is always willing to talk and you will probably leave with something to do. Also, the office is always has at least one board member who will be more than willing to talk to you about ways to get involved.

Homework Too!

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Lexington Co. Library West Columbia Branch

On Your Mark, Get set…..SEARCH!

It was an exciting time today for the newest addition to the USC Law school family as the Class of 2018 had an opportunity to begin their life long career of serving the community. Members of the Class of 2018 went to the Cayce branch of the West Columbia Library where they put some “research” skills to use by searching for missing and misplaced books in the library. They also assisted the librarians by arranging books in the “Friends of the Library” book sale in alphabetical order. First year, Joseph Spate, says that this opportunity is “A mutually beneficial activity for the community.”

Lori Collins, the library’s circulation coordinator, says the library has “so many materials that we have missing in our collection and it takes a lot of time and man power to operate the library. It’s so helpful for you all to be here.”

For many first year law students, service has been a vital component of their interest in attending law school. Heather Goergen, from Huntsville, NC, had the opportunity to work at a law firm prior to law school. She is specifically interested in family law. Heather states, “A library is very important to the community and it should be accessible for families.” Although technology is changing, the functionality and accessibility of libraries are becoming more efficient to library patrons.

The service today in some ways presented challenges for our students, Matthew Brock of Atlanta, GA, left the library today with a new perspective of law school and service. He reflects, “We are looking for some books that we simply can not find and similar to the law, we may not be able to find exactly what we’re looking for, but it doesn’t mean we should stop trying.”

In the midst of laughter and service, these students were model service leaders. As they embark upon these next 3 years of law school, today’s service project initiated a lifetime journey of serving communities throughout our state and nation as future lawyers.

Tony R. Johnson         Vice President       USC Pro Bono Board

Lexington Co Library West Columbia

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On the assembly line at Harvest Hope Food Bank

Harvest Hope Food Bank

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Peer mentor Kelly Pringle reported that her amazing team packed 314 boxes of food for local senior citizens, good job

Kelly’s Album

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