Part of what initially drew Sheila Adams ’11 to Columbia Law School was the opportunity to participate in pro bono projects located in the same neighborhood where which she grew up, Harlem.
Little did the New York native anticipate that studying at the Law School would result in a post-graduation move south of the Mason-Dixon line. Adams will spend next year clerking for Judge Raymond A. Jackson at the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. Thereafter, she will clerk for Judge Carl E. Stewart for a year at the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in Shreveport, La.
Adams is looking forward to starting her career by working in judges’ chambers. She previously interned in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York, and split her second summer between the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, as well as Davis Polk & Wardwell. During her time at Columbia Law School, Adams served as a co-chair of the Tenants’ Rights Project and participated in the Child Advocacy Clinic, including serving as a teaching assistant this past year.
Adams is perhaps most proud of her role as the first editor-in-chief of the new Columbia Journal of Race and Law, which published its inaugural issue this past February. She adds that the Law School’s support was essential in establishing the new journal. “It’s a huge deal that the institution was so supportive in allowing law students to find their intellectual niche,” Adams says. “While leading the new journal has been extremely challenging, it has been a very rewarding experience to work together with my peers and the faculty on this entrepreneurial endeavor.”