April 25, 2018 — Following the completion of her 2L year at the University of Houston Law Center, Anne Stieg will pack her bags for Washington, D.C., to participate in the Peggy Browning Fellowship.
Out of 400 applicants, Stieg was one of 80 people selected for the fellowship. The program provides stipends to first- and second-year law students who dedicate their summer to advancing the cause of workers' rights.
"I was incredibly humbled to receive the fellowship," she said. "It is a great honor, and I am very grateful for the opportunity."
For 10 weeks, Stieg will work with Farmworker Justice, a nonprofit organization that works with migrant and seasonal farmworkers to help them improve their living conditions, immigration status, health, occupational safety, and access to justice. She said her interest in farmworker rights began while working on agricultural issues among others for nearly four years as a legislative aide to a California state senator.
"I am looking forward to spending the summer working for farmworker rights, specifically working to help empower a marginalized group through research, advocacy, and policymaking," Stieg said. "Farm working communities are an underrepresented, vulnerable population facing complex challenges. The current legal framework was not designed to serve this population and often fails to protect farmworkers and their families from the risks involved."
Stieg graduated with honors from the University of California, Berkeley, where she majored in political science. Her educational background and previous professional experience are commonplace for potential law students, but she had her sights set on law school at a young age.
"I had some notion that I would like to attend law school prior to going to college," Stieg said. "However, working as a district representative and legislative aide, and creating and implementing legislation reinforced the decision to attend law school."
Stieg, a Dallas native, said she chose the Law Center because of the variety of educational opportunities offered. Her favorite classes so far have been Professor Ronald Turner's Employment Discrimination and Labor Law courses. She also has enjoyed working in the Immigration Clinic with Professor Geoffrey Hoffman.
"One of the really important drivers in my decision to attend the University of Houston Law Center was the diversity of the school and the quality of the programming," Stieg said. "The Law Center has ranked programs in health law and excellent clinical programs.
"There were a number of factors that make UHLC a great place to be a student. It's affordable, located in the great city of Houston, and offers wonderful opportunities for students to get a broad range of experiences through its programming and curriculum."