Internship: Oberlin Street Law


  • Allison Swaim

Alyson interned with local non-profit Street Law with two goals: to learn about non-profit work on the ground, and to start a youth radio initiative around issues from the Street Law program. Her summer activities focused on the process of rethinking and restructuring Street Law with the goal of making the organization more sustainable. This included talks with organizations like Akron Street Law and the state bar foundation, as well as several meetings to build and expand upon relationships with community organizations and institutions including the county bar association, Oberlin College, and Oberlin public schools. Alyson was also successful in organizing the youth radio initiative and in assisting students with presenting their creative work.

Bio (composed September 2009)

I'm a senior at Oberlin College, where my studies range from electronic music to environmental justice. During my second winter term, I was blessed with the opportunity to work at Radio Victoria, a community radio station in El Salvador. Since then I've been pursuing my passion for radio as a medium for story-telling and social change. I was trained in radio documentary at the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in the fall of 2008. I first began working with Angela Wu and Oberlin Street Law in the spring of my sophomore year, collaborating to offer theater workshops for both Oberlin High School and Oberlin College students. This summer, thanks to a stipend from the Creativity and Leadership Fund, I had the opportunity to work as a full-time intern with Angela. We are working towards sustainability for the Street Law, an organization that teaches practical law to high school students. I organized a group of high school students to host a weekly radio show featuring music, news, and on-air interviews. Topics ranged from life after high school to the city's decision to cancel plans for a skate park. I had a blast getting to know a small group of local youth, sharing my knowledge and learning from them.