Two AUWCL Students Receive National Peggy Browning Fellowships
2L Christina Canalizo, left, and 1L Ericka Cruz.

Two AUWCL Students Receive National Peggy Browning Fellowships

April 19, 2018

2L Christina Canalizo and 1L Ericka Cruz, two students at American University Washington College Law, have been awarded the national Peggy Browning Fellowship.

Canalizo and Cruz will be two of over 80 Peggy Browning Fund fellows participating in public interest labor law fellowships nationwide this summer. Canalizo will be a Peggy Browning Fellow at the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) International Union in Washington, D.C. Cruz’s fellowship will be at CASA – an organization that advocates and expands opportunities for Latino and immigrant people – in Hyattsville, Maryland.

The Peggy Browning Fund was established in memory of Margaret A. Browning, a prominent union-side attorney and member of the National Labor Relations Board. These fellowships provide law students with unique, diverse and challenging opportunities to fight for social and economic justice, with the hope the experiences will inspire students to enter careers in public interest labor law.

“The fellowship is to train the next generation of labor lawyers,” Canalizo said. “(At UFWC) I’ll be doing the big picture work: looking at trends, doing research and writing.”

Cruz said as a 1L, “this is my first real law experience.”

“CASA works a lot with migrant workers’ rights in the DMV area, and I will be doing direct client services including intakes, filing applications, and writing the briefs with the attorney I will be working under,” Cruz said.

The pair were among over 400 applicants nationwide. Those selected for the 10-week fellowships not only excel in law school, but have also demonstrated their commitment to workers’ rights through their educational, work, volunteer, and personal experiences.

Canalizo previously worked for the National Women’s Law Center, and as an intern for their Workplace Justice and Income Security teams, advocated for raising the minimum wage and expanding access to affordable childcare. Cruz is a first-generation American, and prior to attending AUWCL, was an elementary school teacher with Teach for America in Hartford, Connecticut where she piloted a bilingual kindergarten program for students who were recent immigrants to the United States.