Rutgers Law student Nicole Roman '19 answered five questions about her summer internship.
1) What is your summer job and what are you doing there?
This summer I am interning at the Passaic County Prosecutor's Office in the Major Crimes Division. Since the start of my internship I have assisted Chief Assistant Prosecutor Paul DeGroot with the murder trial of a 14 year old girl who was shot and killed in Paterson in 2014. I was lucky enough to witness and assist in the trial from the first day until its conclusion a few days ago. My duties included maintaining evidence in order and at hand for Mr. DeGroot as I was sitting beside him during the trial as well as reviewing suspect and witness interviews. I look forward to the rest of the summer and the exciting projects that are to come.
2) How did Rutgers Law School help you get this summer internship?
I volunteer for the Hispanic Bar Association Dream Pipeline Program which is led by a Passaic County Prosecutor Jonathan Barrera. I expressed my interest to Mr. Barrera who was kind enough to put me in contact with Senior Assistant Prosecutor Josue Vazquez. Mr. Vazquez is Rutgers Law School alumnus as well as a Minority Student Program graduate. Mr. Vazquez ultimately offered me a position for the summer and welcomed me onto his team.
3) What activities are you involved in at law school?
During my first year I served as a 1L representative for the Association of Latin American Law Student (ALALS), I participated in the Voting Assistance Project on Election Day and also American Dream Pipeline Program with the Hispanic Bar Association. I served as a research assistant for The Rutgers Center on Law, Inequality and Metropolitan Equity. This upcoming year I will continue to volunteer for the American Dream Pipeline Program and am now the incoming Vice President of Community Affairs for ALALS.
4) Where are you from, where did you go to undergraduate school, why did you pick Rutgers Law?
Both of my parents emigrated from Colombia before I was born and settled in Guttenberg NJ, where I grew up. I attended North Bergen High School and later attended Ramapo College of New Jersey. I always knew I wanted to work in the law field so I majored in Law and Society with a minor in Sociology. When I was ready to apply for law school I wanted to attend a school that embraced diversity, that was involved in public interest and of course that was convenient in location and affordable. Rutgers checked all the boxes and when I found out I was selected for the Minority Student Program I did not hesitate in accepting.
5) How will this summer's experience help you in your future legal career?
Although I am sure I want to focus on criminal law I am not entirely certain where in the field I would like to work. I hope this internship will allow me to determine that.