Wake Forest Law students log 284 hours of volunteer work during Pro Bono Week 2015

During this year’s annual Pro Bono Week, Wake Forest Law students came together to volunteer 284 hours and 15 minutes of their time to multiple community-serving programs, far surpassing the Pro Bono Project’s goal of 200 hours.

Pro Bono Week took place from Oct. 27-31 this year. More than 10 projects were run by 70 students, including multiple volunteer opportunities and discussions about public service.

One project with a very high student turnout was the Wills Clinic. Seven students spent the entirety of the Friday of Pro Bono Week in Richland, N.C., assisting community members with legal issues surrounding their wills. These students accumulated 61 hours of volunteer work during this project.

Another popular project was Wake Forest Law’s first-ever “Ban the Box” expungement program. Eleven Wake Forest Law students screened over 80 people for expungement qualifications, helping them with the process of having their legal records “sealed,” or erased in the eyes of the law. Almost half of those screened were found eligible to continue with the expungement process. An expungement clinic was also held at Samaritan’s Ministries, and a presentation on expungement took place at Cherry Hill Prison. Fourteen students accumulated 44 hours on these efforts.

Through two other projects, Teen Court and Reclaiming Futures, 20 students accumulated 78 hours in helping North Carolina kids navigate the juvenile system. These projects were just a few of the many volunteer efforts put together throughout Pro Bono Week.

The Pro Bono Project also hosted multiple presentations during the week, including a conversation between Justice Cheri Beasley of the North Carolina Supreme Court and Dean Suzanne Reynolds on improving access to justice.