USC Gould School of Law is establishing its first named clinical law professorship at USC with a generous $1.5 million gift from longtime supporter Audrey M. Irmas, the university announced Tuesday.
Professor Niels Frenzen, founding director of the USC Gould Immigration Clinic, will be installed as the first Sydney M. and Audrey M. Irmas Endowed Clinical Professor. The gift will expand the Immigration Clinic’s work and student participation in advocacy and representation of immigration clients.
“Audrey Irmas has been a steadfast supporter of USC and the Gould School of Law for many decades,” said Dean Andrew Guzman. “We are deeply grateful to have such a committed member of the Trojan Family supporting a critical need for our clinics at the law school.”
Four generations of Irmas’ family attended USC, including her husband, Sydney and grandson Jared Irmas, both graduating from the law school. Daughter Deborah Irmas graduated in 1972 with a degree in fine arts and later taught art history.
“I am thrilled to support the work of USC Gould’s Immigration Clinic,” said Audrey Irmas. “The clinic has helped many women and children successfully gain freedom and asylum after enduring unimaginable harms, while training some of USC Gould’s best and brightest future lawyers.”
The Immigration Clinic’s recent representation of two Tanzanian sisters, who were born with albinism and targeted for “magical” body parts in their small African village, grabbed the national spotlight recently, the statement said. Under the direction of Frenzen, USC law students logged hundreds of hours to help the teenagers win asylum. Tuesday the girls are safe in Ojai, living with guardians and attending high school.
“This is one of hundreds of cases we are working on,” Frenzen said. “It’s cases like these that we are committed to. Our students are actively practicing immigration law while our clients benefit from representation that can literally save their lives.”
—City News Service
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