Celebrating Students: LIzzie Shackney ’17

Lizzie ShackneyI had an eye-opening experience this summer as a Forensic Policy Intern at the Innocence Project in New York City. In its most basic structure, the organization has two branches: legal and policy. The legal side works to exonerate innocent prisoners, whereas the policy side works to prevent wrongful convictions from happening in the first place. My most significant project involved reassembling information on how and why to file an allegation for the investigation of a lab. The information existed, but it was a lot of bulk text that was difficult to read and follow. I picked out the most important information and used some graphics and flow charts to make the information more readable and understandable.

The workplace environment was incredible—my supervisors and colleagues were young, welcoming, and ultimately became good friends. There were weekly brown bag lunch lectures by individuals from outside organizations, exposing me to all kinds of areas of law and public service that I hadn’t known much about before, such as public defense, the rights of pregnant women, and the work of the ACLU and the Ford Foundation. Overall, I learned more about the type of career that I want to work toward and was exposed to both problems and solutions in our society.