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LAPA names 2013 Arthur Liman Fellows

Four Princeton undergraduates, two graduate students selected

Press Release Display Announcement

The Princeton University Program in Law and Public Affairs (LAPA) is pleased to announce the selection of its 2013 Arthur Liman Fellows in Public Interest Law.  The Liman Program enables Princeton students to spend eight to ten weeks during the upcoming summer in an internship serving the needs of people and causes that might otherwise go unrepresented. 

The four undergraduates and two graduate students were selected through a competitive application process.   They will begin their fellowship by participating in the Annual Liman Public Interest Law Colloquium at Yale Law School on April 4-5.  There they will meet public interest advocates, legal scholars, government officials and the Liman Fellows from the five other participating schools.

The 2013 Liman Fellows, comprising the eighth annual class at
Princeton University are:

Undergraduate students:

  • Ariel Futter '15, Undeclared
  • Shawon Jackson '15, Woodrow Wilson School
  • Mengyi Xu '14, Woodrow Wilson School
  • Eleanor Roberts '15, Politics

Graduate students:

  • Kalyani Ramnath, Ph.D. student, History
  • Anna Schrimpf, Ph.D. student, Politics

The Liman Fellows Program was created by the Liman Family Foundation in honor of Arthur Liman's long and distinguished career in public interest law.  It was established at Princeton through the generosity of Emily Liman '85.  Based at Yale Law School, Arthur Liman's alma mater, the program includes undergraduate fellows from Barnard, Brown, Harvard, Spelman, and Yale.  Princeton is the only university to offer summer Liman Fellowships to graduate students.  For more information on the Princeton Liman Fellowship and previous years' recipients, see

Undergraduate Students

Ariel Futter '15 is from Teaneck, NJ majoring in comparative politics. His broad interests include studying state building, the role of courts in developing countries, and promoting the rule of law in general. At Princeton, Ariel is the Co-chair of the Program in Law and Public Affairs Undergraduate Associates, President of Project Civics, an initiative to teach civics in public and charter schools, and Vice-President of the Undergraduate Human Values Forum, a weekly student-faculty discussion group dedicated to exploring the answers to ethical dilemmas.  He has also served on the Center for Jewish Life (Hillel) Student Board. His public-interest related experiences included internships in the offices of Senator Charles E. Schumer (D-NY), where he focused on intergovernmental affairs, and Congressman Steven E. Rothman (D-NJ), where he focused on constituent affairs.  Ariel looks forward to using the Liman in order to help address flaws in the United States legal system while also pursuing his interest in rule of law and legal codes.

Shawon Jackson '15 is from University Park, Illinois majoring in the Woodrow Wilson School, with a specific concentration on education policy. He is receiving certificates in African American studies, Latino studies, and Spanish. On campus, Shawon serves as the president of Princeton's undergraduate student government. Additionally, he has been involved with several civic engagement initiatives, such as teaching English to South American immigrants and debate skills to underrepresented high school students. During his sophomore year, Shawon organized a civic engagement trip to Houston, Texas for 10 Princeton students to explore the issue of youth incarceration. During the summer of 2012, Shawon served as an intern in Honduras with the Organization for Youth Empowerment, an NGO that provides academic scholarships and programs to at-risk youth. He looks forward to spending another summer assisting marginalized groups and advocating for social justice.

Mengyi Xu '14 is from Chicago, Illinois majoring in the Woodrow Wilson School and pursuing certificates in Global Health & Health Policy and Translation & Intercultural Communication. Through various academic and extracurricular engagements, she has developed a passion for exploring ways to strengthen the link between the scientific communities and the policy world in addressing critical issues in global health and environmental sustainability. Prompted by her prior work on private authorities, policy networks, and diplomatic community engagements in these two domains, she is interested in seeing how international environmental law would fit into the picture and whether it has a role in facilitating the achievement of development goals. At Princeton, she serves as the co-chair of LAPA's Undergraduate Associates program, the president of Princeton University Language Project, and the co-founder of Speak with Style. She edits for American Foreign Policy and Princeton Public Health Review, and gives campus and University Art Museum tours. She is also a fellow in the Program on Religion, Diplomacy, and International Relations at the Liechtenstein Institute on Self Determination. Mengyi is seeking a Liman Fellowship in the area of environmental law.

Eleanor Roberts '15 is from Wyncote, Pennsylvania.  She is particularly interested in immigration policy between the United States and Latin America. As a participant in Princeton's Bridge Year Program, Eleanor spent a year working on small-scale development projects in Peru.  While there she became coordinator of a women's craft group, through which she learned about trade between Latin America and the United States and increased her interest in Latino-U.S. affairs.  At Princeton, she coordinates ESL classes for recent immigrants at a community center in Trenton, does advocacy work in support of the DREAM Act, and serves on the Community Based Learning Initiative Board.  She has also conducted research into increasing Latino voter participation in New Jersey.  In summer 2012, Eleanor interned for a human rights organization in El Salvador.  The experience led her to continue defending immigrant rights at home and to pursue a certificate in Latin American Studies.  She looks forward to spending her Liman Fellowship summer working to reform immigration policy and secure rights for undocumented populations.

Graduate Students

Kalyani Ramnath is a first year student in the Department of History. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Arts and Law from the National Law School of India University, Bangalore and a Masters in Law from Yale Law School. She taught legal history and comparative constitutional law from 2010 – 2012 at the National Law School of India University. Her research interests are in the creation and circulation of legal-intellectual elites and ideas with a focus on colonial and postcolonial South Asia, particularly in relation to their thinking on civil liberties. She has previously worked at organizations in India (India Centre for Human Rights and Law, Majlis Manch) and Sri Lanka (Centre for Policy Alternatives), particularly as they relate to constitutional reform and human rights. She has also served as a legal consultant to various projects/organizations in India, including working on the proposed unique identity number scheme, and  the repeal of sedition laws used as censors.

Anna Schrimpf is a third year Ph.D. student in the Department of Politics, focusing on International Relations and International Political Theory. Her broad research interests lie in the development of public international law, international normative change, and NGO advocacy. In her dissertation, Anna explores the processes that drive the selection and problematization of issues that norm entrepreneurs single out as candidates for international legal regulation. Before coming to Princeton, Anna completed an undergraduate degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Oxford. Originally from Germany, she has interned with the German Bundestag, the Social Democratic Party of Germany and the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) in Berlin.