January 27, 2011 12:03 Age: 3 yrs

Berberich Helps Migrant Workers Thanks to Support from LRAP

By: Holly Cline

Caitlin Berberich 06L planned to practice public service law when she arrived at Emory Law. She knew she would make substantially less money than if she joined a large private firm, but that didn’t sway her decision.

“I wanted to work with marginalized populations,” Berberich says. “I interned at Georgia Legal Services and helped with the farm worker program. I loved the work and employment law, so it became pretty clear to me which career path to follow.

“I knew that I wasn’t going to make much money, so I applied for LRAP. It definitely helped take some of the financial stress off and continues to help me and my family.”

Emory Law’s Loan Repayment Assistance Program helps graduates pursue public interest or public sector positions by offsetting their educational debt through financial assistance.

The combined efforts of students, alumni, faculty and staff helped to relaunch LRAP in the early 2000s. The program is available to the Class of 2004 and later.

“In an ideal world, students should be able to pursue whatever type of law they are most interested in practicing,” says Carolyn Bregman 82L, LRAP committee chair. “LRAP helps those students achieve their dreams. They may not have to embark on another path if we can reduce their financial burden.”

Berberich works with Southern Migrant Legal Services, a project affiliated with the Texas Rio Grande Legal Aid, in Nashville, Tenn. She represents migrant workers, litigating work-related claims on their behalf.

Many clients live in rural areas without access to legal services. The employment problems they face can have a devastating effect on their overall lives—Berberich is their advocate, helping to protect them from being exploited.

“I love the work I do and helping my clients. They really appreciate what we do for them,” Berberich says. “It’s rewarding to get justice and vindication for those that are seeking it.”

 

Supporting LRAP

To support LRAP, visit www.law.emory.edu/give then select “Law School Loan Repayment Assistance Program” from the pulldown menu.

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