Associate Director, Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project
Office: Room Y346C
Melinda Cooperman is the Associate Director of the Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project and a member of the adjunct faculty at American University Washington College of Law. She directs the national and international expansion of the Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project, oversees the local Washington, D.C., Marshall-Brennan chapter, and supervises the Fellows in their work in D.C. public high schools. Professor Cooperman teaches a specialized advanced constitutional law seminar to the Marshall-Brennan Fellows which blends school-related Constitutional issues with teaching pedagogy and oral argument skills.
Professor Cooperman has ten years of civic education experience and looks forward to growing the presence of the Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project in law schools throughout the country. She passionately believes that in order to have an empowered, connected citizenry equipped to be active, questioning, democratic participants, we need to teach the 21st century skill sets of creativity, problem solving, collaboration, resilience, and critical thinking to all students. Most recently, Professor Cooperman taught at the Street Law Clinic at Georgetown University Law Center where she supervised law students who taught year-long courses in practical law to high school students throughout D.C.
A magna cum laude graduate of The George Washington University, Professor Cooperman earned her J.D. from the City University of New York (CUNY) School of Law, where she was a Haywood Burns Fellow in Civil and Human Rights, and is earning her LL.M from Georgetown University Law Center.
Professor Cooperman is a passionate advocate for justice and dignity for the most marginalized members of our society. While at the Street Law Clinic, Professor Cooperman and her colleagues created an Innocence Project curriculum to teach students about the issue of wrongful convictions and also started a mock trial program whereby juveniles charged as adults at the D.C. Correctional Treatment Facility had the opportunity to compete against law students and community members. She also served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in rural El Salvador, where she worked to increase citizen participation in government through civic education and outreach programs, and directed a youth and family education program at a transitional homeless shelter in San Francisco with the San Francisco Urban Service. Professor Cooperman continues to volunteer regularly and serve members of the homeless community in Washington, D.C.
Degrees & Universities
- LL.M., Georgetown University Law Center 2015 (expected)
- B.A, The George Washington University (magna cum laude)
- J.D., City University of New York School of Law
- Melinda Cooperman, Seeds of change: Using the Tools of Today to Empower the Leaders of Tomorrow, J. Civic Literacy (forthcoming 2015).
- Melinda Cooperman, Presentation, Joining Forces in Justice Education: Linking Mock Trials and Appellate Advocacy to Teach About Fundamental Freedoms in a Global Context (Global Alliance for Justice Education Conference, Anadolu University, Eskisehir, Turk., July 2015).
- Melinda Cooperman, Presentation, Dead Bodies & Live Mind: How Investigating A Texas Murder Can Inspire Classroom Curiosity (Teaching and Learning Conference 2015, D.C., Mar. 2015).
- Melinda Cooperman, Presentation, The Mock Trial Miracle: Pathways to 21st Century Skills Through Immersive Teaching and Learning Experiences (International Journal of Clinical Legal Education Annual Conference, Olomouc, Czech Rep., July 2014).
- Melinda Cooperman, Panel Presentation, Growing Clinics Across the Globe (International Journal of Clinical Legal Education Conference, Olomouc, Czech Rep., 2014).
- Melinda Cooperman, Presentation, Human Rights Clinic Training Faculty (Centre for Comparative and Public Law, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, P.R. C., 2014).
- Melinda Cooperman, Presentation, Wrongful Convictions & Teaching About the Judicial System and Social Justice (U.S. Conference on Adult Literacy, D.C., 2013).