By Allison Tinsey, L'18
As students close out another school year with two weeks of test-taking, it can be tough to imagine a world outside the confines of the law library. Meanwhile, alum Laura Boorman, L’13, is spending plenty of time thinking about the “world outside” as she prepares for an international bike ride for charity – inspired in part by the commitment to service she experienced in her time at Richmond Law.
“Whether it was through internships at local organizations, participation in a legal clinic, or volunteer work through one of the law school’s pro bono endeavors, the law school always reminded us that there was a much larger world outside of the law school building,” said Boorman. She plans to bike from the base of Mt. Kilimanjaro to the Indian Ocean this summer to raise money for The Foundation for Tomorrow (TFFT).
Along with 20 other riders, including her sister Maggie, Boorman will bike nearly 400 miles across Tanzania to generate donations and awareness for the organization. Funds raised by the group, RIDETZ, will help sponsor the organization’s unique scholarship program, which guides Tanzanian students through every stage of their education and supplements it with emotional support and activities outside of the classroom.
“Through some of my own volunteer work with TFFT, I have learned about the many wonderful things that TFFT is doing to help young people in Tanzania,” said Boorman. In addition to psychological, social, and physical health support for students, TFFT offers teacher training geared toward supporting orphans.
“Hopefully, the money that we raise through RIDETZ will help to allow more and more children in Tanzania the opportunity to learn and pursue their educations unhindered,” said Boorman.
A North Carolina native, Boorman came to Richmond Law after attending the University of Virginia for her undergraduate degree. She chose Richmond based on its commitment to public service and the focus the law school places on legal work for those most in need.
“Most relevant to my upcoming experience in Tanzania [and] one of my favorite things about Richmond Law is the school’s engagement with the larger Richmond community,” she said. “This allowed me to explore different areas of law, meet lawyers in various types of practices, and to remember that pro bono work and giving of our legal talents was always important.”
While at Richmond Law, Boorman helped coordinate the Public Interest Auction benefiting recipients of the Summer Public Service Fellowships (formerly the Summer Stipends). She was excited to work on a cause that not only benefits the students, but also allows them to explore areas of law where financial assistance is not available like public interest work.
To prepare for her trip, Boorman has been biking around Washington, D.C., where she works as an attorney for Venable LLC. “I believe that we are all better at our respective jobs—not to mention, we are happier and more well-rounded, too—when we make time to nurture our interests and passions outside of being lawyers,” said Boorman.
Learn more about The Foundation for Tomorrow, or follow Laura’s journey on her blog.