19 Mar 2021
Mauricio Murga Rios, ’21, has been awarded an Immigrant Justice Corps (IJC) Fellowship, becoming the first Nebraska Law student to receive the highly sought-after honor. Murga Rios is one of twenty-eight law school graduates across the country to be part of the seventh class of Justice Fellows. Selected for their compassion, intellect, and commitment to immigrants’ rights, the 2021 Justice Fellows will bring their many skills to bear on the acute representation crisis in immigration.
Murga Rios comes to IJC with a stellar background and impressive experience. He spent his first law school summer working for an immigration attorney, where he helped immigrants fleeing violence from their home country remain in the United States. Last summer, he worked for the L.A. County Public Defender Immigration Unit, where he equipped criminal defense attorneys with the resources necessary to preserve their immigrant clients’ status and/or eligibility for future immigration relief. Now is his final semester at Nebraska Law, Murga Rios represents low-income immigrants as part of the College’s Immigration Clinic.
“Receiving this fellowship is a great honor,” says Murga Rios. “I chose IJC because I will receive unmatched training and the support necessary to provide exceptional legal advocacy for the immigrant community. The Fellowship will allow me to connect with true advocates nationwide, and I will have access to resources and the opportunity to learn from the best. I want to be the best because people without access to a lawyer need and deserve the best.” Murga Rios explained.
Murga Rios’ IJC Fellowship takes him to Catholic Charities of Central Florida, where he will provide access to lifesaving representation to immigrants on a wide range of affirmative and defensive cases. When he begins his two-year fellowship this fall, he will carry forward Nebraska Law’s proud legacy of public service and its mission of serving those in need.
IJC is the first fellowship program in the United States dedicated to providing immigrants with high-quality legal representation. IJC identifies promising lawyers and advocates passionate about immigration, places them in legal services and community-based organizations where they can make the greatest difference and supports them in training and expert insights as they directly assist immigrants in need. “I am confident that the 2021 Justice Fellows, with their impressive backgrounds and commitment to immigrants’ rights, will help IJC continue to meet the deep need for quality legal counsel which makes all the difference.” said IJC's founder, Robert A. Katzmann, Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.