Staff Attorney, DBA Program, DNA People’s Legal Services (JD/MA)
Alicia entered Northeastern determined to make an impact as an environmental lawyer.
But during her third co-op, she had the opportunity to provide legal aid to Navajo tribal members in Arizona — and she realized how much she enjoys using her skills to assist others. “My goal is to help people navigate legal issues to receive fair and equal treatment under the law,” says Alicia, who accepted a post-graduate position with a co-op employer, DNA People’s Legal Services.
“Through my co-ops, I was able to figure out where to focus my career,” says Alicia, who earned a dual-degree JD/MA through the School of Law’s program with Vermont Law School. “But more than that, I learned how to be a lawyer — how to file cases, work with clients, deal with complex situations and emergencies. Studying law doesn’t teach you how to handle all of that — practicing does.”
Alicia assisted lawyers in conducting research, created digests of issues within EAB cases and drafted a proposed decision for the board.
Alicia researched and drafted legal memoranda on a variety of topics, including the Clean Water Act and hydraulic fracturing.
Alicia worked with Professor Lee Breckenridge on research related to Massachusetts’ water law.
Alicia worked on a Navajo reservation in northern Arizona, helping tribal members — many of whom lacked official identification papers — through legal issues including divorce, name changes and child custody.
With a collaborative group of her peers led by Professor Jim Rowan, Alicia gained experience working on unemployment and welfare cases.
Working within the firm’s domestic violence practice area, Alicia was able to accompany Bay Area Legal Aid lawyers in the courtroom. She witnessed effective litigation techniques firsthand, from cross-examining hostile witnesses to making strong closing arguments.
Through her work in the Diné Bí ts’íís báá Ah’jiteí (DBA) Program, which means “program for the health of the people” in Navajo, Alicia provides free legal services to low-income Native American patients and their families being served at health care facilities in the Navajo Nation.