June 14, 2021
Southwestern’s Public Service Program and SCALE Students Present at Legal Services Corporation Innovation in Tech Conference
The Public Service Program was proud to present SCALE student leaders Nicole Rossi-Standley, Paulina Nunez, Gonzalo Villanueva, and Matthew Calcanas’s work on a national platform at this year’s Legal Services Corporation’s Innovations in Technology Conference (ITC). Leveraging and Engaging Law Students to Build Tech Tools: An LA Story incorporated discussion on the interplay of law student trends, legal services needs, and technology tools that can be implemented in promoting access to justice and high-quality legal representation for low-income clients.
The ITC grew out of the Legal Services Corporation (LSC) Technology Initiative Grant (TIG) Program, which seeks to expand access to justice by promoting technological innovations in legal services delivery and pro se assistance. It brings together technologists, legal aid advocates, court personnel, law school professors, pro bono coordinators, and other professionals to showcase technology projects and tools being implemented across the country and internationally to promote access to justice and high-quality legal representation for low-income people. The conference also provides an opportunity to network with a community of colleagues and to cultivate project ideas that could lead to successful TIG applications.
LSC is the single largest funder of civil legal aid for low-income Americans in the nation. Established in 1974, LSC operates as an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation that promotes equal access to justice and provides grants for high-quality civil legal assistance to low-income Americans.
Southwestern SCALE students' work in document automation will make an incredible impact in a virtual relaunch of the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles’ Expungement Clinic hosted at the Downtown LA Law Library.
Nicole Rossi-Standley, one of the SCALE student presenters, shared, "When the pandemic forced the monthly Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles (LAFLA) Expungement Clinic to become remote, LAFLA offered the four of us Southwestern SCALE students who were monthly volunteers (Matthew Calcanas, Paulina Nunez, Gonzalo Villanueva, and myself) the opportunity to collaborate on a document automation project with Documate."
"Being able to expedite the often confusing and arduous paperwork experience not only enables applicants to start the expungement process sooner, but the questionnaire that we developed through Documate also enabled LAFLA to help a greater number of applicants since the process became so streamlined. It was an honor to be a part of and to present this collaborative project at the national 2021 Legal Services Corporation’s Innovations in Technology Virtual Conference in January."
- Nicole Rossi-Standley '21
Watch the SCALE students' presentation below: