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Hastings Alumni Mag-Spring 2014

{ ENTERPRISE } A New Clinic in Social Enterprise & Economic Empowerment UC Hastings offers students an opportunity to gain transactional experience while advancing social justice. 40 SPRING 2014 ocial Imprints has a catchy corporate tagline: “Printing With Purpose.” The company hires those in recovery from substance abuse, individuals who have been released recently from incarceration, those without GEDs, and returning veterans. Founded in 2008, the company prints T-shirts and other corporate apparel for some of the hottest techs around, including the Maker Faire, SXSW, and TechCrunch’s Crunchies (and UC Hastings). CEO Jeff Sheinbein pays his employees “competitive plus wages.” The industry standard for the printing sector is $18, but that is barely a living wage in San Francisco. For that reason, Sheinbein and COO Kevin McCracken wanted to do more for their employees. They wanted to create an incentive plan that would allow employees to reap the profits from the company’s $2 million in revenues. With this goal in mind, they turned to UC Hastings’ Social Enterprise & Economic Empowerment Clinic, which launched in January 2013. Serving the Greater Good The clinic, directed by Professor Alina Ball, provides pro bono services to entrepreneurs and small organizations that have a social impact as part of their business plan. UC Hastings students work to understand each client’s specific organizational model, industry, and social impact goals. They then provide counsel according to those individual needs, advising clients on a variety of corporate governance, compliance, transactional, and operational matters. They also gain experience as business attorneys and develop transactional legal skills, including strategic planning, project management, client interviewing and counseling, legal research and analysis, contract drafting, and cross-cultural competencies. And they expand their horizons. “Beyond preparing students for a career in corporate law,” Ball says, “the clinic gives them an opportunity to explore how transactional lawyering can advance issues of social and economic justice.” “UC Hastings’ new clinic is tapping into the creative energy we’re seeing in the city,” says Amy B. Cohen, director of neighborhood and small business development in the Mayor’s Office of Economic and Workforce Development. “It’s a unique step into the community for a law school.” “UC Hastings’ new clinic is tapping into the creative energy we’re seeing in the city. It’s a unique step into the community for a law school. ” — Amy B. Cohen, Mayor’s Office of Economic and Workforce Development


Hastings Alumni Mag-Spring 2014
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