The Diversity Scholarship Foundation presented Katelyn Ringrose, a third-year student at Notre Dame Law School, with the Public Interest Advocate Scholarship Award on November 27 at the 2018 Unity Award Dinner at the Hilton Chicago. The scholarship is awarded to law students interested in pursuing a career in public service or a student who is actively involved with a nonprofit agency that represents the needy and underprivileged.
Ringrose is interested in pursuing a career ensuring government surveillance practices balance security and freedom. She has devoted much of her law school career to pro bono work. Specifically, Ringrose is the founder of Impowerus, an app and website that connects juvenile immigrants with pro bono legal aid. Ringrose has presented Impowerus at South by Southwest and the 2018 ABA Tech Show, and the app won $40,000 in awards at the 2018 McCloskey New Venture Competition.
Additionally, Ringrose has published with the Dartmouth Law Journal and served as a judicial intern for Associate Judge Richard Pollack of the Hawaii State Supreme Court. She spent her 2L summer working in the Criminal Justice Division of the Washington Attorney General’s Office in Seattle and her 3L fall semester working for the Juvenile Justice Center in South Bend, where she represents children in various capacities for the St. Joseph County Public Defender’s Office. During the spring semester of her 3L year, Ringrose will extern with the U.S. Department of Justice through the Notre Dame Law in D.C. program.
Ringrose is dedicated to diversity and inclusion in the legal profession and helping others escape the cycle of poverty and domestic violence.
"I am exceptionally proud of Katelyn. She stands out as a student who goes above and beyond, acting out of passion, founding organizations, contributing to life and diversity at the Law School, and launching initiatives that have nothing to do with law school grades or just checking off requirements for graduation,” said Katelynn McBride Barbosa, program director for public interest and Chicago initiatives in Notre Dame Law School's Career Development Office.
Ringrose serves as the president of the LGBT Law Forum at Notre Dame Law School and helped create that organization.
There were more than 60 applications for Diversity Scholarship Foundation awards. The foundation awarded 21 scholarships to diverse students.
The Diversity Scholarship Foundation was established by a group of attorneys and judges committed to the ideal that diverse law school student bodies are a means of ensuring further diversification in the legal community. The foundation is a not-for-profit organization that provides scholarships to diverse and deserving law students. The foundation also provides free continuing legal education seminars (CLEs) on a wide range of topics. The scholarships are given to students in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Indiana.
Ringrose is the second Notre Dame Law student to receive a Diversity Scholarship Foundation award. Veronica Canton '18 J.D. received an award in 2017.