Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Law students take pro bono work to Panama

January 28th, 2014

This story originally appeared in Tulane University’s New Wave.

By: Alex Chasick
newwave@tulane.edu

Nineteen Tulane Law School students performed client intake, legal research and community education in rural Panama recently as representatives of the Tulane Law and Human Rights Chapter of Global Brigades.

Global Brigades has hundreds of chapters worldwide, focused on a range of issues from public health to business to legal aid. Most chapters are on an undergraduate campus.

"I don't think interest in pro bono work should end after college," says law student Brittany Wolf, so she and her classmates created the Global Brigades chapter and planned a trip to Rio Congo Arriba in Panama's Darien Province.

Wolf says that Rio Congo Arriba was an ideal location for a Global Brigades trip. The area is rural and largely undeveloped, and residents earn less than $100 per month, making legal services unaffordable for most.

The Tulane students worked with attorneys from Panama City, Panama, to provide pro bono legal consultations and assist residents with family and property law issues. The group also hosted a workshop to educate residents on their legal rights and empower them to conduct some basic transactions that would not require an attorney, such as obtaining child support.

In addition to learning and explaining a foreign legal system, students also got to brush up on their Spanish. Five of the students speak fluent Spanish and Global Brigades translators joined the group to ensure comprehension.

After pro bono work was done, many of the students participated in a VIP tour of the Panama Canal and met with members of Panama's government, including Panama's president, Ricardo Martinelli.

Wolf says the group is already looking at next steps. "We are working with a JD/MBA student to start a business and microfinance chapter at the business school, which we hope to have up and running next year."

Alex Chasick, a freelance writer living in New Orleans, is a 2005 graduate of Tulane University.

Photo by Brittany Wolf.

To see the original story posted in Tulane University’s New Wave, click here.

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Congreso internacional de literatura y cultura centroamericanas (CILCA XXIII)

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Tulane University, Loyola University New Orleans, y Purdue University Calumet tienen el gusto de invitar al CONGRESO DE LITERATURA y CULTURA CENTROAMERICANAS (CILCA XXIII) que se llevará a cabo en la ciudad de New Orleans, Louisiana, del 11 al 13 de marzo del 2015 en el campus de Tulane University y Loyola University New Orleans.

Desde el primer congreso realizado en Nicaragua 1993, CILCA se ha caracterizado por ser un espacio de intercambio intelectual y de amistad para académicas/os, escritoras/es y lectoras/es. El congreso se ha efectuado en todos los países centroamericanos y por primera vez en su historia, CILCA se realizará en los Estados Unidos. La ciudad escogida es Nueva Orleáns, puerta de entrada hacia el Caribe y los países de América Central. El intercambio cultural entre Nueva Orleáns y América Central ha sido intenso por muchísimos años, y la ciudad alberga una de las comunidades de origen hondureño más grandes de los Estados Unidos. Tulane University tiene estrechos lazos con la región a través del Stone Center for Latin American Studies, the Latin American Library, y the Middle American Research Institute. Loyola University New Orleans se ha distinguido por el trabajo con las comunidades hispanas que realizan varias de sus unidades académicas, incluyendo the Law School y el Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies.

La organización de CILCA XXIII la realizan la Dra. Maureen Shea y el Dr. Uriel Quesada, expertos en literatura y cultura centroamericanas, con el apoyo del Dr. Jorge Román Lagunas, creador y promotor de CILCA.

La convocatoria será publicada en agosto 2014.

Tulane University, Loyola University New Orleans, and Purdue University Calumet invite you to the Congress on Literature and Culture of Central America (CILCA XXIII) which will take place in New Orleans, Louisiana March 11-13 2015 on the campuses of Tulane and Loyola New Orleans.

From the first conference, held in Nicaragua in 1993, CILCA has been a space for intellectual exchange and friendship for academics and writers. The conference has been held in all of the Central American countries and for the first time in its history will be held in the United States. New Orleans, the gateway to the Caribbean and Central America, has been chosen as the location. New Orleans and Central America have a longstanding cultural exchange and New Orleans has one of the largest Honduran communities in the United States. Tulane has long connections with the region through the Stone Center for Latin American Studies, the Latin American Library, and the Middle American Research Institute. Loyola New Orleans works closely with hispanic communities particularly through the Law school and the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies.

CILCA XXIII is organized by Drs. Maureen Shea and Uriel Quesada, experts on the literature and culture of Central America, with the support of Dr. Jorge Román Lagunas, creator of CILCA.

Call for papers coming in August 2014.