Kristine Garcia RLAW ’21 spent her summer in the U.S. Coast Guard Judge Advocate General (CGJAG) Legal Internship Program in Cape May, thanks to the efforts of her career counselor at Rutgers Law School in Camden, who helped her find internship opportunities in her area of interest.
While on her internship, Garcia spent eight weeks working on several legal projects for the Coast Guard. She researched case law, statutes, and Coast Guard manuals; drafted memorandums, letters, and documents; reviewed member discharges; created local instructions for the base; and supported the Coast Guard legal assistance program, which helps members with personal civil legal issues.
“I had a rewarding experience at Training Center Cape May," she said. "The highlights were having an opportunity to polish my legal writing and learning new skills through practice. I was immersed in forward-looking projects and exposed to military policies and procedures. I enjoyed working in a team environment.”
In mid-August, she was lauded for her work from the Commanding Officer, Capt. Kathy Felger who said, “You were a valued addition to the legal staff. Most notably, your personal efforts enabled Training Center Cape May to continue to provide high quality legal support in spite of limited resources, during the time of year with the highest recruit throughput, ensuring mission success.”
Garcia, who is a former Coast Guard petty officer, said the experience was valuable for her future legal career. She hopes to work in government and public service when she graduates in January. At Rutgers Law, she is the Managing Notes Editor for the Journal of Law & Public Policy, a member of Student Veterans, and the Women’s Law Caucus.
“I decided to pursue law school because legal practice is intellectually challenging. I find helping others and serving society gratifying,” she said. “The profession also offers a wide range of career choices.”
A native of Port Republic, New Jersey, Garcia ran cross country and track at the University of Hawaii-Manoa, and also has a master’s degree from the University of Texas.