Coastal students earn legal services fellowships

Florida Coastal School of Law was honored to see two students receive prestigious Florida Bar Association Legal Aid Summer Fellowships this summer.

Travis Sumpter and Annie Kwon were two students of more than 40 across the state chosen for the fellowships. More than 400 students applied.

The opportunity gives students interested in public law the hands-on experience of working at a Florida legal aid program for 11 weeks. To qualify, applicants had to show their commitment and experience working with the low-income community, a passion and insight for public service work, their future goals and employment objectives and academic achievements, among other selection criteria.

Sumpter, a South Carolina native and 3L Coastal student who is the first male in his immediate family to attend college and pursue a higher level of education, worked as a fellow with Southern Legal Counsel Inc. His experiences included work on a city ordinance case involving no-trespass citations and the homeless in city parks.

“I want to practice labor and employment law upon graduating law school,” said Sumpter, who is currently an employment law bureau clerk at the Office of the Attorney General. “I have a passion for learning about the laws and regulations that govern the U.S. workforce. I also have a profound interest in ensuring that there are productive working relationships between employer and employee and the workplace is free of allegations of discrimination.”

Kwon, also a third year student at Florida Coastal School of Law, spent her 11-week fellowship at Jacksonville Area Legal Aid Inc. As a fellow, Kwon was involved in the research and drafting of pleadings and motions in class action and individual cases — particularly collections and foreclosure issues. She observed and participated in many areas of the firm’s work, including insight on how consumers are harassed by debt collectors.

Kwon, who is from Orlando, is pursuing a career in Florida consumer law, and called the experience “eye-opening.”