UMF law internships woven into the fabric of the community

FARMINGTON, ME  (May 17, 2017)—Not all college campuses are woven into the fabric of the community like the University of Maine at Farmington, and this proximity has provided a recent grad from Scarborough and a junior from Lewiston with valuable career opportunities.

Courtney Alofs, graduating UMF senior from Scarborough, completed her second year as an intern in Farmington lawyer Paul Mills’office this spring and has since been offered a position in the office of Andrew Robinson, Maine district attorney for Franklin, Androscoggin and Oxford Counties.

She has always had an interest in the inner workings of the legal system and loves the research and investigative background work that legal cases rely on. At Mills’ office she worked as an abstractor researching public records and attending probate and district courts to provide legal support for issues relating to real estate and probate issues.

UMF law interns Courtney Alofs and Mana Abdi outside the Franklin County Courthouse

UMF law interns Courtney Alofs and Mana Abdi outside the Franklin County Courthouse

Alofs is aware of how valuable her time at UMF has been. “I came to UMF for an education and gained a community of professionals committed to my success,” she said. A political science major with a minor in international and global studies, she had advisors in both programs who take a sincere interest in all their students.

Jim Melcher, professor of political science, not only advised Alofs academically but also came to her basketball games and cheered her on. Linda Beck, UMF professor of political science, had the seniors meet at her house where she would cook for them and they could feel at home while working on their senior projects.

Mana Abdi, a UMF junior from Lewiston is also majoring in political science with a minor in international and global studies and shares Beck as an advisor. She worked as an intern with the University of Maine School of Law last summer and went on to serve an internship with Maine D.A. Robinson in the Farmington Franklin County District Attorney’s Office this semester.

“It is so rewarding to work with students who I have had in class and then go on to do an internship in a field they are interested in pursuing as a career,” said Beck. “The opportunity to apply their classroom knowledge to professional contexts reinforces their academic experience and gives them a leg up in a competitive economy. Courtney and Mana are excellent examples of UMF students who have benefited from UMF’s extensive and growing internship programs.”

A pre-law student, Abdi divides her time between Robinson’s office and the Franklin County Courthouse where she can get an inside look at the relationship between lawyer and client and how the system works in real life. She values the experience as a great starting point for her career.

“I have so appreciated working and learning in the District Attorney’s office,” said Abdi. “I have had the opportunity to see the law in action. It has opened my mind to the system and how it really works in daily life.”

Abdi will be continuing her internship with Robinson’s office in Lewiston this summer and plans to attend law school after she graduates next year.

Both of these internships were made possible by the UMF Partnership for Civic Advancement. At the forefront of student internships at UMF, the Partnership helps connect students with career opportunities in the Western Maine community and around the state.

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Media Contacts:

Linda Beck, UMF professor of political science and director of international and global studies, linda.beck@maine.edu

Jim Melcher, UMF professor of political science, jim.melcher@maine.edu

Andrew Robinson, Maine district attorney for Franklin, Androscoggin and Oxford Counties  – 778-5890, andrew.robinson@maineprosecutors.com

EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at:
http://www2.umf.maine.edu/inside/wp-content/uploads/sites/159/2017/05/RP167-058.jpg
Photo Credit: UMF photo
Photo Caption:  Left to right: UMF law interns Courtney Alofs and Mana Abdi outside the Franklin County Courthouse