Sunday, January 24, 2010


Hooray! As spring semester begins tomorrow, it'll be with a few upgrades in my activities at Harvard. Each one has seemed a bit minor to mention before now, but together I think they'll give you a good sense of how things are progressing:

At the Tenant Advocacy Project (TAP), where I work with low-income housing residents, I've been accepted to the Intake Committee to help decide which calls from tenants will be accepted as cases for our advocates. My swanky-sounding title is Intake Director, and my job will be contacting tenants to get our first sense of their circumstances and attending meetings to gauge the collective case load. I'm so ready for this new role, partly because I got to leave my last one with a bang - we just got word that my last big case, a hearing to reinstate a family's housing subsidy, came back a win!

At my journal, the Harvard Law and Policy Review (HLPR), there was also just a round of promotions. I've been made a Senior Student Article Editor (the position of my direct supervisor last semester) for spring and the Executive Tech Editor for next school year.

That's me near the top!

The history here is this: my first semester at Harvard, I was a 1L Editor (see the bottom right); the next semester, I was a 1L Editor and Tech Editor (a member of the team that does a second pass over all articles for typos.) This past semester, I was a Student Article Editor (supervising a team of 1Ls on a student article) and Senior Tech Editor (a slightly higher ranking member of the tech team.) Now, in the coming semester, I'll be supervising several Student Article Editors, and next year I'll run the entire tech team. I'm nervous about the responsibility, but it has definitely been fun to rise through the ranks and see what it takes to bring a real legal publication to print.

Finally, I've just gotten approval to claim clinical credit along with the Community Action course I'll be continuing with in spring. Law clinics are programs giving real-world practice experience to students, either through in-house outfits like the Legal Aid Bureau or Legal Services Center or through faculty-sponsored externships paired with workshops. The Community Action clinic is like the latter, though with an outside project already required for the class, it's really more of a way to claim credit for big projects involving a bit more work than the two-hour course would indicate. That's definitely how my project working with Boston youth is shaping up - something I'm hoping to blog all about very soon - so I'm glad to be giving it a place on my schedule (and my transcript!)

Well, that's about it - hopefully it won't all prove impossible to balance. Sometimes I think Harvard is one big case of, as C.S. Lewis put it, "if you do one good deed your reward usually is to be set to do another and harder and better one." I guess we'll know once class begins this week - wish me luck!


mimi said...

Congratulations and WOW. You are accomplishing so very much in ADDITION to getting a law degree. Wow, wow.

ivy lea said...

Er, it's kind of the natural progression of things if you stick with a journal and a group like TAP. Being student-run, they have more than enough leadership roles for every interested 2L and 3L to take.

But thanks for your encouragement! (: