Public Interest Fellowship Program

Overview

The Walter Lucas Public Interest Fellowship Program (PIFP) at Villanova University School of Law provides financial support to students who commit their summers to public service legal work.  Many law students, dedicated to helping the less fortunate, are limited by financial constraints.  Similarly, public interest legal organizations often cannot afford to hire much needed summer interns.  Through fundraising, PIFP, an entirely student-run organization, provides summer fellowships to Villanova Law students, who in turn aid the larger community by working with various public interest organizations throughout the region, nation and world to deliver volunteer legal services to those in need.

PIFP Table at the Activities Fair

Since its founding in 1998, PIFP has raised over $770,000 through a variety of creative fundraising endeavors and awarded over 170 summer fellowships (each now valued at $4,500).  In addition, 2013 marked the eighth consecutive year that PIFP provided $12,000 to fund its Loan Repayment Assistance Program (LRAP).  LRAP provides a $12,000 award, paid over three years, to a recent graduate committed to working for a public interest organization or governmental agency.

The highlight of PIFP’s fundraising efforts is its annual spring auction, which in recent years has featured 250 to 300 silent and live auction items donated by individuals and businesses throughout Greater Philadelphia and across the country.  PIFP’s Pepper Hamilton LLP 2014 Public Interest Auction will take place on Friday evening, March 28, at Villanova Law School, and marks the 17th anniversary of the event.  PIFP is most grateful to Pepper Hamilton LLP for serving as the auction’s first official sponsor. 

Please join PIFP in helping public interest organizations to deliver volunteer legal services to those in need.  Click on the links above to learn more, and thank you for your support of public interest! 

PIFP Board

Directors Alexandra Muolo
Angela Brosnan
Alumni Liaison Vanessa Stine
Development Coordinator Jess Bass
Fellowship Coordinator Susan Stanton
Financial Advisor Ben Bolas
Publicity Coordinator Whitney Young
Secretary Zach Chapman
Solicitation Coordinators Sam Epstein
Special Events Coordinators Daron Raleigh
Boone Schriebman
Treasurer Meagan Potter
Volunteer Coordinators Kane Podraza
Jason Ketelsen

Walter Lucas Public Interest Fellowship Program 
Pepper Hamilton LLP 2014 Public Interest Auction

PIFP Live Auction held in the Commons

The Walter Lucas Public Interest Fellowship Program (PIFP) of Villanova University School of Law will host the Pepper Hamilton LLP 2014 Public Interest Auction on Friday, March 28, 2014 at Villanova Law School.  The silent auction will begin at 6 PM, and the live auction will begin at 8:30 PM.  Admission is free and all are welcome.    

This year marks the 17th anniversary of the event, PIFP’s largest and most successful fundraiser, and PIFP is most grateful to Pepper Hamilton LLP for serving as the auction’s first official sponsor.

Comprised of both silent and live auctions, the event in recent years has featured 250 to 300 items donated by individuals and businesses throughout Greater Philadelphia and across the country including: lunch and golf foursomes with distinguished Villanova Law alumni, vacation stays, tickets to cultural and sporting events, and much more; and all proceeds go toward providing $4,500 fellowships to current students who commit their summers to performing public service legal work.  PIFP also awards one $12,000 fellowship each year to a recent graduate who has committed to working full-time for a public service organization or governmental agency.

Founded in 1998, PIFP is a student-led organization dedicated to supporting student legal work in the public interest sector.  Each year, volunteers work tirelessly to raise money to provide summer fellowships for their fellow students who otherwise would work in unpaid public interest positions.  This work is critically important, not only to the public interest organizations with whom the fellows serve, but especially to the lives of low income individuals, the elderly, abused and neglected children, victims of discrimination, people with disabilities, and other members of our society in need of legal advocates.

Please join PIFP in helping public interest organizations deliver volunteer legal services to those in need throughout the Greater Philadelphia region and beyond!  

Monetary Donations

We appreciate donations is any amount. Please consider sponsoring a fellow for an hour ($11.25), a day ($90), a week ($450), a month ($1800), or an entire summer ($4500).

You can make a monetary donation online by clicking here and designating your gift to the Public Interest Fellowship Program, or by sending a check payable to Villanova University School of Law to:

Villanova University School of Law
Public Interest Fellowship Program
299 North Spring Mill Road
Villanova, PA 19085

Auction Items

We are always looking for more items to put in our annual auction.  If you have an item you would like to donate please fill out one of the donation forms below.  If you have any inquiries about what type of item to donate, please contact us at pifp@law.villanova.edu.

Auction Catalogue

Click here for a list of items offered at this year's auction!

The Philadelphia Deans' Cup

VLS Students Compete in the Annual Cozen O'Connor Deans' Cup

The Philadelphia Deans’ Cup is an annual charity basketball game between Temple Law and Villanova Law designed to raise funds for the public interest organizations of both law schools—Temple's Student Public Interest Network (SPIN) and Villanova's Walter Lucas Public Interest Fellowship Program (PIFP).

The 2014 Philadelphia Deans' Cup will take place on Friday, April 11, with tip-off at 8 PM in the Jake Nevin Field House at Villanova University, and marks the fourth annual meeting of both schools on the basketball court. Villanova won the inaugural game in 2011, Temple was victorious in 2012, and Villanova won the first Cozen O’Connor 2013 Philadelphia Dean’s Cup last spring.  We hope to bring home the Cup again this year!

Temple & VLS Deans and Cozen O'Connor Sponsors at Deans' Cup

Special thanks to Cozen O’Connor for serving as the first official sponsor of the Philadelphia Deans’ Cup!  Pictured above from the Cozen O’Connor 2013 Philadelphia Dean’s Cup are Temple Law School Dean JoAnne Epps, Cozen O’Connor Member and Pro Bono Committee Chair Hayes Hunt ’97 TLS, Cozen O’Connor CEO Michael Heller ’89 VLS, Villanova Law School Dean John Gotanda, and Cozen O’Connor Member Sean Carter ’96 VLS.

Apply for LRAP

The PIFP Loan Repayment Assistance Program Application is available for download here.

2013 PIFP Summer Fellows

  • Zachary Chapman- Mazzoni Center Legal Services (Philadelphia, PA)

  • Taylor Chichelly - Montgomery County District Attorney's Office (Norristown, PA)

  • Melisssa Kaplan- Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (“HIAS”) (Philadelphia, PA)
 
  • Jason Ketelson, PIFP Jeffrey S. Moorad Fellow - Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office (Philadelphia, PA)

  • Carla Krystyniak – Delaware Riverkeeper Network (Bristol, PA)

  • Erik Orvik- Community Legal Services (Philadelphia, PA)
  • Meagan Potter- Community Legal Aid Society, Inc. (Wilmington, DE)

  • Daron Raleigh- Windsor County State Attorney’s Office (White River Junction, VT)
 
  • Brittany Saulsberry, PIFP U.S. Bank Fellow – Defender Association of Philadelphia (Philadelphia, PA)
 
  • Brennan Schreibman- Federal Defenders of Eastern Washington and Idaho (Yakima, WA)

  • Alexandra Skarka- Homeless Advocacy Project (Philadelphia, PA)

  • Vanessa Stine, PIFP Cozen O'Connor Fellow - Friends of Farmworkers (Philadelphia, PA)

  • Ikrah Ullah- Maryland Office of the Public Defender (Baltimore, MD)
 

Contact PIFP

Villanova University School of Law
Public Interest Fellowship Program
299 North Spring Mill Road
Villanova, PA 19085

610-519-6163

pifp@law.villanova.edu