Africana studies major makes connection with Wooster alumnus in legal field

Seven Townsel ’22

Seven Townsel ’22, an Africana studies major and member of the volleyball team, interned with Judge James L. Miraldi ’73 at the Lorain County Court of Common Pleas in Elyria, Ohio. Townsel worked within the general division, where both civil and criminal cases are handled.

Tell us a bit about your internship and what you are doing at the Lorain County Court of Common Pleas?

As an intern at the Lorain County Court of Common Pleas, I’ve had the opportunity to sit in on criminal and civil cases, review case-related briefs, and attend status conferences concerning these matters. I also assist with filing and supervising juries. In addition to my responsibilities at the justice center, I also assist the probation department with a data collection project.

 How did you find out about this internship at The Lorain County Court of Common Pleas?

Judge Miraldi and I were connected through mutual interest in the Black Student Equity Fund, which I’m a co-founder of at The College of Wooster. After learning that Miraldi is a Wooster alumnus and a member of my hometown community, I reached out to him regarding any potential internship opportunities.

Tell us a bit about what resources you used at The College of Wooster to help you secure this internship?

This internship is unpaid, and I would not have been able to participate if it was not for the APEX Fellowship grant provided by the experiential learning team in APEX, Wooster’s center for Advising, Planning, and Experiential Learning.

Share some examples of some bigger projects you have been part of during your internship?

I have been tasked with collecting data on cases from 2018-2021 concerning individuals who have been convicted of low-level drug-related crimes. Certain offenders fit the criteria that qualifies them for intervention. For intervention, lawyers need to file a motion to the judge for it, and if granted, the offender goes through the probation department for drug counseling, participation in community service, and other terms. Upon completing intervention, the charges are dismissed. I am documenting all docket cases that filed a motion for intervention, whether it was granted, the reason it was or was not granted, and the individuals’ demographics.

By the end of your internship what are you hoping to accomplish and take away from your time spent there?

I am hoping to walk away with a better understanding of what career I may want to pursue within the field of law. I would like to thank Judge Miraldi and his support staff for providing a comfortable environment that has allowed me to gain an invaluable experience.

Posted in Experiential Learning on August 1, 2021.

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