About the center
Experience and scholarship tell us that the role of law in society and culture is best understood through interdisciplinary analysis. Culture, power, politics, globalization, information technology, biotechnology, literary criticism, environmental science, economics — these and many other disciplines and phenomena create a rich context for the study of law, a context that is critical to gaining an understanding of our society. There is simply no one discipline or field of professional study, domestic or global, that can impart a comprehensive understanding of law's impact and meaning.
The fundamental mission of the Center for Law, Society, and Culture is to promote and disseminate a multidisciplinary understanding of law through scholarship, teaching, and discussion. The Center produces, presents, and coordinates research conducted by exceptional scholars in schools and departments across Indiana University on the subject of law and legal problems. The Center supports research related to the law in a broad sense, including cultural aspects of law expressed through political theory and the humanities, and scientific aspects of law expressed through technological advance in biotechnology, environmental science, and information technology.
Recognizing that a vital democratic culture requires an informed citizenry that is comfortable talking about and thinking about the law, the Center for Law, Society & Culture inspires collaboration among scholars and serves as a catalyst for curricular innovation and enhancement. The Center advocates and invigorates the study of law and its relationship to society and culture among all students at Indiana University.
To engage students at the Maurer School of Law in particular, the Center oversees two innovative programs: the Access-to-Justice Service Learning Program and the Bradley Fellows in Criminal Law and Procedure.
To engage students at the Maurer School of Law in particular, the Center oversees two innovative programs. Through the Access to Justice service learning project, 1L students engage in conducting legal needs studies in Southern Indiana (specifically Monroe and Lawrence Counties) and in service learning projects with community partners to enhance effectiveness in legal aid delivery. Additionally, 2L and 3L students can participate in a Project Management course in which teams of students learn the necessary skills by working on actual access-to-justice service learning projects. The five projects that the teams seek to accomplish before graduation are:
- Creating an online form bank for unrepresented litigants in family law cases, integrating them with easy-to-use software, and making instructional videos for their use;
- Collaborating with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana’s pro bono office to create a web-based software platform for counsel recruited to represent indigent prisoners with meritorious medical malpractice claims;
- Working with IU’s Title IX office to design a restorative justice program for resolving campus sexual assaults;
- Partnering with the Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic to extend its Project GRACE expungement help desk to Bloomington
- Partnering with Thriving Connections to design easily understood materials that will advise and counsel Bloomington residents on debt collection and debt management.
The Center also is home to the Bradley Fellows in Criminal Law and Procedure. The Bradley Fellows Program, named after the late Professor Craig M. Bradley, includes a full range of curricular, extra-curricular, and experiential learning opportunities designed to prepare Indiana Law students for a successful and rewarding career in criminal justice – as a prosecutor, public defender, private criminal defense attorney, policy-maker, or researcher.
The Indiana University Maurer School of Law’s Center for Law, Society & Culture Fellows Program is designed for graduate and professional students at Indiana University who have an interest in law and society, the study of how law and legal institutions impact society and social processes, and are in turn influenced by them. Students will engage with faculty and visiting scholars about the intersection of legal actors, institutions, and processes with disciplines such as sociology, psychology, philosophy, religion, history, economics, and others, often through the use of quantitative and qualitative empirical methodologies.
The Center for Law, Society & Culture Fellows program will allow fellows to understand law and legal problems from very different vantage points than in courses. It can also provide useful opportunities for students to meet and network with other scholars and graduate students across campus. Fellows will discuss readings prior to each CLSC speakers' visit, and as well as attend the speakers’ presentations themselves. Students may also sign up to join speakers for a meal or coffee. Students may also research and write papers under the supervision of CLSC-associated faculty (potentially for credit). Applications for the Center for Law, Society & Culture Fellows are due on July 6, 2020. To apply, please send a resume and a brief paragraph about why you would like to participate in the Fellow Program to Prof. Jody Madeira at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 2020-2021 Center for Law, Society & Culture Fellows
Alex Busse is a third year JD candidate at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law. Originally from Fort Wayne, Indiana, he completed his undergraduate studies at Bethel College in 2017, majoring in philosophy with a minor in English. As a law student, Alex is eager to explore how some of the theoretical aspects of other disciplines influence legal policy.
Megan Cicotte is a second year law student from Marine City, Michigan. Megan earned her BA in law and society, with minors in forensic science and women's studies, from Purdue University. She currently works for a Low Income Tax Clinic and plans to continue a career in public interest after law school.
Alex Dowland is the 2L Director of the LGBTQ+ Project, a research director for the Inmate Legal Assistance Project, and an associate for the Indiana Journal of Law and Social Equality. He has a passion for criminal law, and would like to practice as a federal criminal defense attorney.
Samantha Feistritzer, a 3L from Selma, Indiana, graduated from Indiana University in 2018 with degrees in English and classics. Samantha's favorite aspects of law school have been her public interest work with the Law School's Community Legal Clinic and Indiana Legal Services. She spent her 1L summer externing with a judge in rural Indiana and her 2L summer as a clerk in the Data Privacy division at the Attorney General's Office in Indianapolis.
Megan Freveletti is a 2L from Rochester, Illinois and graduated from the University of Mississippi with a B.A. in international studies and Spanish. Before law school, she worked for the Illinois House of Representatives. She is vice president of the American Constitution Society and part of the re-activation group for the school's chapter of the National Lawyer's Guild. This past summer, she worked with the Conservation Law Clinic, and hopes to continue her multidisciplinary work in the intersection between environmental law and social justice.
Jay Gillen is a current 3L student at the Maurer School of Law from Stilwell, Kansas. He graduated with a double major in European history and international studies at Emory University, where he wrote his honor's thesis on the French army's pivotal battles in fall of 1917. Jay's legal interests include civil defense and Second Amendment law, and private interests include improv comedy as a member of IU's Full Frontal Comedy group, historical shooting competitions, and the First World War.
Justin Lorber is a 2L from Los Angeles, California, who graduated from Indiana University in 2019, majoring in marketing and co-majoring in law, ethics, and decision-making at the Kelley School of Business. After spending his 1L summer as a law clerk with the Office of the City of Attorney of Los Angeles, he is currently an associate on the Indiana Journal of Law and Social Equality and the treasurer of the Business Law Society.
Amanda Magaldi is a 2L who has always had an interest in learning about other cultures. She cultivates this interest through travel and study of other languages, most notably Spanish and Italian.
Yael Massen is a 2L originally from Long Island, New York. She graduated from SUNY Geneseo ’13 summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, and earned her Master of Fine Arts in creative writing-poetry at Indiana University in 2017. She has participated in the Sonia & Celina Sotomayor Judicial Internship Program in the Eastern District of New York, and is an Associate for Indiana Law Journal and the incoming Executive Director of the Law School's chapter of If/When/How: Lawyering for Reproductive Justice.
Stephen Morris is a second-year law student originally from Bright, Indiana. After graduating from Indiana University in 2009, he spent nearly a decade working as a producer and writer in non-fiction television production as well as fourteen months volunteering as a primate research assistant in South Africa before returning to Bloomington. Stephen is currently the Director of Administration for the Inmate Legal Assistance Project. He is interested in law and behavior, criminal justice reform, and issues in constitutional law.
Roopa Pandit is a rising 3L who graduated from University of Evansville with a major in psychology. At law school she is a member of Phi Alpha Delta and the Feminist Law Forum, and is currently pursuing a dual degree Juris Doctorate and Masters of Library Science. She spent her summers as a judicial extern at the Henderson County Family Court and as a certified legal intern at the Marion County Public Defender Agency. Her legal interests are constitutional law, family law, and criminal law.
Zachary Peifer is third-year law student from St. John, Indiana. He graduated from Eastern Illinois University with a degree in business management and a minor in political science. Zachary serves as the Senior Managing Editor for the Indiana Journal of Law and Social Equality.
Elena Roper graduated in 2017 from Indiana University Bloomington with a bachelor's degree in psychology and a minor in criminal justice. After graduation, she worked for Indiana University's Office of Undergraduate Admissions as an admissions counselor. As a law student, she is interested in criminal and civil litigation, public interest, and family law.
Bill Sanchez is a second-year law student from Whitehouse Station, New Jersey. Before starting law school, Bill worked full time as a journeyman dock builder in Local Union 1556. He is currently a member of the Indiana National Guard. Bill studied criminal justice at Saint Peter's University and would like to pursue a career in public interest.
Yeting Shi is a rising 2L. She completed her undergraduate study at East China University of Political Science and Law, and her master's at St Andrews University. Prior to law school, Yeting worked both as a media coordinator at the Rockbund Art Museum Shanghai, and as a content contributor for the Art Newspaper Shanghai.She spent her 1L summer working for the Indiana Court of Appeals in Judge James S. Kirsch's chamber as an ICLEO fellow.
William Stockdale is a 3L from Fort Wayne, Indiana. After spending four years in the United States Army, William graduated from Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne. This past summer, he worked in-house for a medical device manufacturer and clerked for Judge Ahler at the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Indiana.
Taylor Turner is a third-year law student from Lynchburg, Ohio. In 2017, she graduated from Wilmington College with a double major in English and political science and wrote her senior honors thesis on the feminist undertones in Daphne DuMaurier’s classic novel Rebecca. She is currently the vice president of the Law School's Advocates for Life chapter and as a member of the Health Law Society and Federalist Society.
Caroline Veldhuizen is a 2L from Western New York and a 2019 graduate of the University at Albany. At Maurer, she is pursuing an education policy minor and spent the past summer interning with the Lumina Foundation for Education. Following her graduation, Caroline intends to pursue a career at the intersection of education law and Native American law, with a particular focus on special education and disciplinary reform.
Jake Vent is a 2L from Kokomo, Indiana. He earned his BA in economics and political science from Case Western Reserve University. After law school, Jake hopes to build a career as a prosecutor, with a goal of working on issues such as violent felonies, drug crimes, and terrorism and national security issues. I
Charles Westerhaus is a second-year law student focusing on cybersecurity and data privacy law. He is a military veteran who served in the U.S. Navy.
Kenny Whitlock is a second-year law student at Indiana University Maurer School of Law originally from the Cleveland, Ohio area. Kenny graduated summa cum laude from the University of Kentucky with a bachelor’s degree in business management and a minor in political science. He is interested in researching economic topics as well as topics related to the intersection of law and business.
Kaitlin Willbanks, a 3L from Monticello, Indiana, earned her B.A. in religion from Centre College before serving as an AmeriCorps VISTA. At the Law School, she works with the Habeas Litigation Clinic and serves as a Managing Editor for the Indiana Journal of Law and Social Equality and a lead research director for the Inmate Legal Assistance Project. Her legal experience also includes internships with the White County Circuit and Superior Courts, the Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic, and the Children's Policy and Law Initiative of Indiana.
Lin Ye is a third-year law student at Indiana University Maurer School of Law. She graduated from DePauw University with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and a minor in economics. She is interested in the intersection of public policy, social issue, and the law.
Pamela Foohey, Professor of Law, Advisory Board Chair
Jeannine Bell, Richard S. Melvin Professor of Law
Joseph L. Hoffmann, Harry Pratter Professor of Law and Director, Bradley Fellows Program
Laura Foster, Assistant Professor of Gender Studies
Ilana Gershon, Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology
Michael Grossberg, Sally M. Reahard Professor, Department of History and Professor of Law
Gene Shreve, Richard S. Melvin Professor Emeritus, Indiana University Maurer School of Law