Duke Law Students Receive Competitive North Carolina Fellowships

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Sebastian Kielmanovich '04 and Dimitri Varmazis '04

It was a clean sweep for Duke Law School when two of its students, Dimitri Varmazis '04 and Sebastian Kielmanovich '04, were recently awarded the highly sought-after Clifton W. Everett, Sr. Community Lawyer Fellowships. Funded by the North Carolina Interest on Lawyers' Trust Accounts (IOLTA), only two such fellowships are offered each year for entry level, one-year staff attorney positions in selected Legal Aid of North Carolina offices.

"We are thrilled that both of this year's Everett Fellowships were offered to our students,” said Duke Law School's Associate Dean for Public Interest and Pro Bono Carol Spruill. “This is an extremely competitive fellowship, and I am very pleased that Legal Aid of North Carolina has recognized the talent and strength of commitment to public service that Dimitri and Sebastian offer.”

Spruill said the Office for Public Interest and Pro Bono works collaboratively with the Office of Career Services to help students interested in pursuing careers in public interest research and apply for post-graduate fellowships.

As Everett Fellows, Varmazis and Kielmanovich will serve low-income, rural North Carolina communities. They will each handle a general caseload addressing issues in poverty law such as housing, employment, consumer, domestic and public benefit. Kielmanovich will be located in Legal Aid's Wilmington, N.C. office and Varmazis will be working out of its Gastonia, N.C. office.

Varmazis has always been interested in pursuing a career in poverty law. Since his first year of Law School, he has worked for Legal Aid of North Carolina, which makes him a natural fit for the Everett Fellowship.

"I wanted to be able to gain practical experience while serving people who are truly at their last line of defense," Varmazis said.

Kielmanovich described the Everett Fellowship as a valuable and meaningful way of furthering his career. "I am absolutely thrilled about this opportunity. I will be able to help those in the community who most need legal assistance while gaining a great deal of professional and personal experience. I don't see what other path I could have taken as a lawyer that would provide me more happiness," he said.

To learn more about post-graduate fellowships and other opportunities offered by the Office of Public Interest and Pro Bono and the Office of Career Services, please visit the Public Interest and Pro Bono website.