News | July 29, 2021

2021 Navy JAG Corps Summer Interns

By Navy JAG Corps Public Affairs

The Navy JAG Corps is proud to host our 2021 summer interns! The Navy JAG Corps offers internships and externships to law students wishing to gain valuable legal experience, the opportunity for academic credit, and greater insight into life as a Navy judge advocate. Meet some of our summer interns.


Haley Almany
Loyola University Chicago School of Law
Region Legal Service Office Mid-Atlantic, Detachment Groton

“I applied to the Navy JAG Corps Internship Program because I hope to have the honor of serving as a Navy JAG myself after law school. When I began law school I did not know what area of law I wanted to practice, but I knew I wanted to do something meaningful that would constantly challenge me both professionally and personally. This summer I have observed the various ways Navy Judge Advocates assist Sailors every day and have gained a better understanding of the military justice system. My time with the Navy this summer was an experience I will value throughout my career. Hooyah!”

Courtney Burns
University of Oregon School of Law
Region Legal Service Office Hawaii

“I applied to the Navy JAG Corps intern program to gain a better understanding of the type of work and personal dynamics that are a part of the JAG Corps. To learn from and work with the amazing men and women serving their Navy community and government in such important roles is an amazing opportunity. I was raised with a focus on giving back and assisting your community in any capacity you can. I knew that I always wanted a legal career where I can help protect, assist, and serve my community and the mission of the Navy JAG will allow me to do that and more. I look forward to learning from the members of this office about the unique areas of law the JAG Corp practices and how they have incorporated the Navy JAG Corps’ mission into their everyday lives. This glimpse into the work and lives of a Navy JAG officer will help me to make a fully informed decision about the career and community that I join upon graduation.”

Daniel Costandy
University of Southern California Gould School of Law
Navy Region Southwest

“My favorite part about the summer experience thus far has been seeing the layers and interplay at work within the Navy. How the JAGs interact with the commands and how JAGs are rooted in most of the movements in the Navy fascinate me. Seeing the interplay of administrative issues, military justice, ethics, and environmental work has been interesting and it leaves me with the conviction that there will always be something new and interesting to tackle throughout a career with the Navy JAG Corps. My leadership has also been exceptional and I take pride in learning from the officers and enlisted service members that I am honored to be working with. Interesting field trips to courts, ships, aircraft carriers, and helicopter squadrons help keep things interesting and help to remind me what all of this about – supporting our exceptional Navy and the men and women who form it.”

Ryne Gottlieb
University of Richmond School of Law
Region Legal Service Office Southeast (NAS Corpus Christi / NAS Kingsville)

“This summer, I was fortunate enough to work at a remote location (NAS Corpus Christi / NAS Kingsville) where I was able to see firsthand what it's like to be a JAG officer in the U.S. Navy. Over 10 weeks, I spent time in both the Legal Assistance office and in Command Services. In each, I was able to see the challenges of being the sole attorney for not one, but two naval installations and the day-to-day work that such an assignment entails. Getting to assist the JAG this summer has been tremendously rewarding and has served to reinforce my desire to join the JAG Corps upon my graduation from law school this upcoming year.”

Griffith Hawk
Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law
United States Naval Academy

“The Naval Academy has been a fascinating location to serve as a JAG Extern. I have not only learned a great deal about the JAG Corps as a whole, but I also have been able to see a whole variety of legal issues Staff Judge Advocates deal with on a day to day basis. The Navy JAG Externship program has further allowed me to build a clearer understanding of both the JAG Corps, military justice, and how JAGs fit into the overarching structure of the Navy. Working at the Academy has been a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I am thankful for the mentorship of all the JAGs and Academy legal staff I was fortunate enough to work with this summer.”

Joy Hetrick
Southern Methodist University, Dedman School of Law
NAS JRB Fort Worth

“The summer program with the Navy JAG Corps was excellent! I enjoyed getting to assist current and former service members with civil law issues while working in Legal Assistance. It was interesting to see the different issues service members face and help them find solutions. I also really enjoyed group PT. The team kept it challenging and fun - playing sports such as ultimate frisbee, kickball, and our very own Navy Olympics!”

Molly Huff
Boston College Law School
Region Legal Service Office Northwest

“The Navy JAG Corps was a clear choice for my summer internship because I wanted to truly experience what a career as a Navy JAG could look like. I have aspired to serve my country as a JAG since interning on military bases during my Undergraduate education. In fact, these internships sparked my initial interest in the law and pushed me to apply to law school. The Navy JAGC summer internship affirmed my decision to pursue this career path. I was fulfilled by working closely with JAGs in all fields - trial, command services, and legal assistance. More importantly, the camaraderie of the Corps made me feel at ease and confirmed my desire to join an organization dedicated to helping others. I am confident that my summer internship has better prepared me for a future as an attorney and naval officer in the JAG Corps.”

Aaron Lau
University of California, Hastings College of the Law
Commander, Naval Air Forces

“I applied to join the Navy JAG internship because I hope to serve in the Navy JAG Corps after graduating from law school. The aspect of the Navy JAG Corps that attracted me the most was the ability to practice in a plethora of fields, such as military justice and command services. Moreover, I believed that by participating in the internship program, I would be able to develop as a leader and an advocate. Throughout the summer, I was given the opportunity by my command to do just that. The JAGs and legalmen I worked with could not have been better mentors to me. The internship has given me a chance to observe the day-to-day life in the JAG Corps and I have enjoyed every minute of it. I am honored and privileged to have been a small part in the internship program. I hope to continue to develop the skills I have learned this summer to one day serve with my mentors.”

Katelyn Leach
University of Memphis, Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law
Navy Personnel Command

“The opportunities and experiences I have gained through the Navy JAG internship program will not only be invaluable to my future as a Navy JAG (if I am lucky!), it has also absolutely solidified that the JAG Corps is the legal career path that I am passionate about. Interning at Navy Personnel Command enabled me to learn processes and procedures related to Navy legal correspondence, officer and enlisted retentions/separations, show cause authorities, giving left and right limits verse giving direct recommendations, and broadened my understanding of how big and complex the Navy actually is. This internship has introduced me to the different opportunities within the JAG Corps and exemplified how even though JAGs are spread all over the world, the Corps really is one large team working together to fulfill the Navy's mission. I have learned that one person or place may not have the exact answer needed; however, there is an abundance of resources and specialties within the JAG Corps to consult to obtain the guidance/answer needed to ensure mission accomplishment.”

Sommari Muwwakkil
University of Missouri Kansas City, School of Law
Region Legal Service Office Mid-Atlantic

“I decided to apply for an internship with the Navy JAG Corps to take an affirmative step towards becoming a Navy JAG Officer. Furthermore, I wanted to gain irreplaceable hands-on legal experience in a diverse number of practice areas. The reasons for my decision were rooted in my history as a prior-enlisted marine. As an enlisted individual who desired to one day become an attorney, I always admired the professionalism, knowledge base, devotion to commitment, and service that members of the JAG Corps upheld. And I strongly desired to observe these attributes firsthand as an intern.”

Matthew Nichol
Penn State Law
Region Legal Service Office Hawaii

“I applied for the Navy JAG Corps intern program in order to learn more about the day to day life of a JAG officer in the Navy and develop a deeper understanding of the military legal community. I want to commission and join the JAG Corps for my career and serve the great men and women of the armed forces, and so I have done a lot of research into the JAG Corps and what it does from a high level. However, I wanted to apply for and take part in the intern program in order to gain insight into the JAG Corps that cannot be obtained through research. This includes day to day activities, learning the types of cases most JAGs handle, how to approach them, and a general introduction to the military legal system. And overall, it was a great learning experience.”

Vivian Overbeck
The George Washington University Law School
United States Naval Academy

“I chose to apply for the Navy JAG Corps intern program because I have considered a career in the military for my entire life. My father, a Naval Academy graduate, is my biggest role model, and my initial interest in the Navy was inspired by him. The Intern Program was the perfect way for me to experience a snapshot of what I could expect as a potential future Judge Advocate, and this internship has confirmed my aspirations to serve as a Navy Judge Advocate.”

Sheyanne Rodriguez
North Carolina Central University School of Law
Region Legal Service Office Mid-Atlantic

“I have had some of the most amazing experiences of my life at Naval Station Norfolk! My favorite week thus far has been my time spent with service members at Legal Assistance. I was able to shadow JAGs and civilian attorneys as they comforted clients facing painful divorces, guided sailors who've lost thousands of dollars due to fraud, and just helped with so many different issues. It must give service members some relief to know they don't have to face complicated legal issues alone. What an amazing resource the Navy provides! The attorneys were caring, understanding, and helpful. I hope to follow in their footsteps after law school—as ENS Sheyenne Rodriguez.”

Mary Catherine Rogers
Charleston School of Law
Defense Service Office Southeast, Branch Office Pensacola

“I applied for the Navy JAG Corps program to get a test-run opportunity to understand the role of a Navy JAG officer. I enlisted in the Navy Reserves as a Firecontrolman when I was 19 with the end goal of becoming a JAG officer. I was professionally recommended in April, so I used this summer to gain as much knowledge as possible to prepare for me to become a Navy JAG. It was my hope to learn the ins and outs of the military justice system as well as how to advocate on behalf of fellow Sailors. I have quickly learned the JAG Corps is a close-knit community that truly emphasizes and champions leadership, professionalism, and public service. This is a team I want to play on. Throughout this summer, I have developed strong professional and personal relationships with the attorneys and clerks in my office, and I am incredibly grateful for this learning opportunity." 

Michelle Rojas
Cardozo School of Law
Defense Service Office Southeast, Branch Office Jacksonville/Mayport

“After a hectic and fully-virtual school year, my experience with the Defense Service Office Southeast has been unforgettable. My favorite part of the internship has been speaking with JAGS from various commands; they have explained the importance of their work, shared their Navy journeys, and offered invaluable advice. Not only have I gained a new appreciation and understanding for the array of practice areas, but I have come to realize that one of the best aspects of the Navy JAG Corps is the people who it is comprised of. This summer I have also been fortunate enough to work closely with the DSO JAGS while learning about the intricacies of Military Justice. DSO Southeast has done an incredible job at allowing the interns to immerse themselves in the work life of a JAG. I had the opportunity to collaborate in the drafting of a motion and observe a full Courts-Martial, Guilty Plea, and several Boards of Inquiry.”

Whitney Roth
DePaul University College of Law
Commander, Navy Installations Command (CNIC)

“My favorite part of this summer was the close collaboration with the entire CNIC Force Judge Advocate team. Being included in the substantive legal reviews and research was such an extraordinary experience and provided unparalleled professional development. Part of this collaboration also included weekly Command PT and I truly enjoyed being able to train with the team each week. The hour we spent outside running and working out each week provided such a fun team bonding experience, and I actively looked forward to each session. The summer spent with CNIC was an incredible experience and I look forward to continuing my journey with the Navy JAG Corps.”

Sarah Younes
New Hampshire Franklin Pierce School of Law
Region Legal Service Office Mid-Atlantic

“My favorite experience this summer has been to learn about the different processes in the Navy. During my time at the Transient Personnel Unit, I have been able to be a part of multiple Non-Judicial Punishment processes and learned the intricate parts of the system. I have been able to see a wide range of case types and worked closely with a JAG to understand the different decisions that she makes and advice she provides. It was an eye-opening experience as to the daily life of a JAG and all the different aspects of being a lawyer and an officer. I have been a welcomed addition to the TPU legal team and have been able to learn from many different Sailors and their experiences as part of the legal team and the Navy.”

Sean Zeitlin
University of Miami School of Law
Defense Service Office Southeast, Branch Office Mayport

“When I was notified that I was accepted to the Defense Service Office in Mayport I was ecstatic because joining the US Navy JAG Corps is a dream of mine, and this feels like a giant step to ultimately achieving it. It is quite challenging to name a specific part of this internship that I could definitively label my favorite part. However, one of the most impactful takeaways from this internship was having the opportunity to get to know and learn from practicing Navy JAGs about their work, duties, and the variety of paths a JAG can take in the profession. I have also been able to observe many of the legal processes that JAGs at the DSO are involved in, such as ADSEP Boards, Boards of Inquiry, Motion Hearings, Guilty Pleas, and a full Courts Martial. In addition, I have had the chance to do things that I had only imagined being able to do prior to this internship, like looking out over a destroyer from its bridge or sitting in the pilot’s seat of a P-3. This internship has been a wonderful and life-changing experience, which has only further solidified to me that a future career as a US Navy JAG is something I will continue to aspire to achieve.”
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