I have had so many amazing experiences during my time as an intern this summer both inside and outside the office, it’s hard to pick just one. From learning about my family roots to learning about the Irish legal system, I have truly had the summer of a lifetime.
During my time in Ireland, I was able to visit the town where my grandmother grew up. I visited the harbor town where she first left to come to America. I even got to spend time with each of her siblings who don’t make it to America often. Additionally, I met so many family members who I had heard about but never had the chance to meet and some that I had never knew existed but ended up becoming close to. My family, especially my grandma’s siblings, told me stories about when they were younger and their lives growing up in Ireland. They told me about when my grandma, the oldest of all the siblings left to come to America and how that affected them. Talking to my family members really opened my eyes to different aspects of my family history that I never would have known otherwise. I also spent a lot of time with my first cousin once-removed who, when she was younger, spent a period of time with my family in New Jersey. She told me that living in New Jersey and spending time with her American family were some of the best memories of her life and she gave me advice to make the most of my time in Ireland. Talking to her opened my eyes and inspired me to not waste a minute of my summer.
Another experience that I’ll never forget was learning about a famous case that the solicitor I worked with has been a part of for the past twenty years. It is one of the most famous cases in Ireland where an English man was accused of murdering a French woman in a small town in West Cork. The man was found not guilty in Ireland but is being tried in absence in France. My solicitor referred to this case a lot because it has a long history and is still ongoing today. The solicitor that I worked with not only told me everything about the case, from its beginning to where it is today, I also got to talk to the accused man on the phone and hear about the case from his point of view. Besides learning about this particular case, I got to work on a number of other interesting cases over the summer. I’ve always been interested in criminal justice so working with a solicitor in the office who mainly worked on criminal rather than civil cases was so interesting. Accompanying my solicitor to court on a daily basis allowed me to learn about different crimes from petty theft to rape and murder while sitting in on client consultations gave me greater insight into professional interaction with clients. This summer, I learned more about the Irish criminal justice system than I ever thought I would.
As the sun sets on another summer, it’s safe to say it was one I’ll never forget.