Inspiring the Next Generation of Litigators for Liberty

July 26, 2022

In early June, 36 wonderfully inquisitive students from around the country and one international student joined IJ attorneys and staff in our headquarters office in Arlington, Virginia, for our 30th annual Law Student Conference.

Participants enjoyed a weekend filled with sessions where IJers explained complex legal theories in immersive and practical ways. Our team designed the program to inspire participants to seize public interest opportunities in the future. As one student put it, “I tried to choose my favorite panel or moment, but it wasn’t possible because everything was so incredible. [IJ President] Scott Bullock said if we took one thing away from the conference, he wanted it to be inspiration. I am full of that now!”   

This year, we were excited to add a few new sessions to our programming, including a mock litigation case discussion and a deep dive into the particulars of legal writing pertaining to public interest law. The mock litigation case discussion gave students the opportunity to hear what it’s like to vet a potential IJ case. We then used the case we vetted together to simulate the experience of writing the introduction to a complaint, the initial document we file in court in IJ cases. 

As always, one of our favorite sessions was the IJ client panel, which this year featured Anthonia Nwaorie (Houston Forfeiture), Marc N’Da (Nebraska Certificate of Need), Akia McNeary (Kentucky Educational Choice), and Rudy Carey (Virginia Fresh Start). 

Participants in IJ’s Law Student Conference leave not just trained and inspired but as members of IJ’s Human Action Network, who often assist IJ with researching potential cases, writing amicus briefs, serving as local counsel, and litigating cases IJ is unable to litigate. And, in time, some even go on to become IJ attorneys themselves!

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