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The Clough Center for the Study of Constitutional Democracy

Public Interest Law Scholars: 2017-2018

the clough center for the study of constitutional democracy

Consistent with the Center’s mission to support students committed to service to others, the Clough Center provides grants to Boston College first and second-year law students for uncompensated public interest work during the summer. The 2017 Public Interest Law Scholar grants have been awarded to:


Alyssa Fixsen

Alex Bou-Rhodes

Alex is a member of the Boston College Law School class of 2019. He graduated from BC High ('11), and BC ('15) with a BA is psychology. Alex is currently pursuing a dual-degree in Law and Social Work. Alex has spent many years working with underprivileged youth in communities throughout Boston, first at the South Boston Boys & Girls Club and most recently at Franciscan Children's Hospital.

This summer, Alex will intern at the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office in its Child Protection Unit. This coming academic year, he will intern at Community Public Counsel Service's Youth Advocacy Division.

Recently, Alex presented a talk to the BC community titled Unlock the Vote: Restoring Felons' Rights, which addresses the issue of felon disenfranchisement and how Massachusetts as a state can address the issue. He looks forward to a career working with those who are marginalized or silenced by our legal and political systems.


Patrick Gaudet

Emily Mitchell

Emily is a rising 3L at Boston College Law School. She graduated from Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, FL with a degree in environmental studies and a minor in coastal management.

Emily spent the summer after my 2L year at the Conservation Law Foundation’s (CLF) Boston Chapter as a legal intern working on ocean planning. CLF uses a comprehensive approach to today’s environmental problems combining law, science, and the market to find creative solutions.

During the spring semester of my 2L year she participated in a semester in practice in London. During this time Emily worked at ClientEarth, an environmental organization working across Europe and beyond to find solutions for environmental challenges. ClientEarth uses law and science to tackle issues from climate change to air pollution and deforestation across Europe and beyond. At ClientEarth I worked on projects related to energy, clean air, and strategic climate change litigation.

This summer Emily will work as a law clerk at the Environmental Enforcement Section (EES) of the Environmental and Natural Resources Division of the Department of Justice. The statutes the EES is responsible for bringing civil actions under have been enacted to protect public health and the environment from adverse effects of pollution. Such statutes include the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, Safe Drinking Water Act, Oil Pollution Act, RCRA, and the Superfund law (CERCLA). A large portion of the work the EES has done involves bringing actions against responsible parties to either clean up hazardous waste sites, or to reimburse the U.S. for the cost of the clean up. In doing this, the EES is ensuring that the cost of cleanup falls on to the polluter, and not onto the public.

Emily is interested in environmental law broadly and also interested in energy law as it relates to climate change solutions. Additionally, she is interested in how climate change intersects with human rights. She hopes to work doing government or public interest environmental law upon graduation.  


Sonja Marrett

Kelly Morgan is an incoming fourth year JD/MSW student with an interest in immigration, criminal justice and human rights. She grew up in Western Massachusetts and graduated from Wesleyan University in 2011 with a BA in Music and French Studies. She then spent a year teaching English and working in an immigrants’ rights organization in Marseille, France and coordinating a music and theater workshop in Rabat, Morocco focused on engaging youth of diverse nationalities in combating xenophobia. After moving to Boston in 2012, Kelly worked for several years at BEST Hospitality Training, where she managed a program providing English classes to workers at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center.

In 2014, Kelly began her dual degree program at the BC School of Social Work, where she specializes in macro social work with a global practice concentration. As part of her social work studies, she completed two year-long field placements, first with the Massachusetts Bail Fund and then with the Muslim Justice League.

Kelly spent the first summer of her legal studies interning at the Political Asylum and Immigrant Representation Project, and is spending her final summer interning with the Immigration Impact Unit at the Committee for Public Counsel Services. This summer she will also be the teaching assistant for a social work course that will travel to Brussels and Paris to study migration in a European context.

This coming year, Kelly is looking forward to participating in the BC Immigration Clinic for a second semester. After graduating, she plans to work at the intersection of immigration and criminal law. Her goals are to support immigrant organizing and provide direct representation to individuals facing deportation as a result of overly punitive immigration policies. 

Lauren Schaal

Lauren Sposa is a member of the Boston College Law School Class of 2018. She grew up in Nashville, Tennessee and received her B.A. in Philosophy and Theology from Boston College in 2011. Prior to attending law school, she spent two years with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps Northwest—first in Anchorage, Alaska with the American Red Cross and then with the Northwest Justice Project in Omak, Washington. In Omak, Lauren served as a Tribal Court Spokesperson and Community Liaison. During her time with the Northwest Justice Project, Lauren was admitted to the bar of the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation and represented low-income tribal members in civil matters before the Colville Tribal Court. She also organized community outreach programs on issues such as landlord-tenant disputes and public benefits, as well as attended legal outreach programs to farmworker communities in Central Washington. It was this work that sparked Lauren’s interest in pursuing a career in law and eventually led to her return to Boston College.

Lauren is dedicated to public service and is particularly passionate about public defense. While at BC Law, she has interned for the Innocence Program of the Committee for Public Counsel Services and the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. Additionally, Lauren participated in the Law School’s Prison Disciplinary Clinic in the Fall of 2016, where she represented clients at disciplinary hearings in Massachusetts state prisons. Lauren will spend the summer of 2017 as an intern with the New Hampshire Public Defender’s Office in Nashua, New Hampshire, where she will represent indigent clients in both juvenile delinquency and adult misdemeanor cases.