MIA was fortunate to be selected as a host law firm for the Memphis Bar Association’s Summer Law Intern Program (SLIP). SLIP places minority high school students interested in entering the legal field with local law firms, legal departments, and government agencies so they can experience the day-to-day life of lawyers and legal professionals.
This summer MIA hosted Maria Garcia, a rising senior at Arlington High School. During her internship, Maria attended hearings, participated in our Legal Orientation Program for Custodians presentations at the immigration court, assisted with translating documents and articles for asylum applications, and helped with general office responsibilities. We are sad to see her go, but we are excited about the prospect of having Ms. Garcia as a colleague in a few more years.
Here are Ms. Garcia’s poignant thoughts on her experience with us this summer:
My time at Mid-South Immigration Advocates has been a wonderful experience. This opportunity has given me the chance to work with real life lawyers and experience their everyday lives. Since the moment I step foot into this office, the entire staff has been warm welcoming. The staff helped me learn about the legal profession and have taken me to court with them. I was able to witness a real life case in front of me, which changed my perspective in multiple ways.
Personally, I know what it’s like to be an immigrant. I recently received my green card a couple of months ago. Though, my case was not as cruel or brutal as other cases I have read. Reading and witnessing other cases enlighten me to have an idea of how others have to fight for a better, safer life. Working here inspired me to help others who are in need. It has opened my eyes that helping just one person can make a huge difference.
Although, my time here only lasted a month I will never forget the memories made here and all the things I learned to become a lawyer. Thanks to Allison Wannamaker and Sally Joyner I know what the next step is to fulfill my dream. I appreciate their acceptance, knowledge, and answering every question that came to my mind.
Today, I have perceived that this isn’t the ending, but the beginning of my future career. I leave with a positive mind, goals, and desire to accomplish my dream. I am very pleased to have worked here, this experience will be unforgettable.
~ Maria Garcia