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Clinics and Experiential Learning Programs

Gopal BalachandranPhoto of Gopal Balachandran
Director, Externship Program, Co-Director, Criminal Appellate & Post-Conviction Services Clinic, Assistant Professor of Clinical Law
Gopal Balachandran directs the Externships Program as well as co-directing the Indigent Criminal Justice Practicum. As director of the Externships Program, he oversees students' employment with legal services and governmental organizations, including externships with judges. He has also supervised students in writing and filing briefs in the Pennsylvania Superior and Supreme Courts under the Indigent Criminal Justice Practicum.

Susan BardoPhoto of Jeffrey Erickson
Director, Family Law Clinic
Susan Bardo directs Penn State Law's Family Law Clinic, which represents clients in domestic violence and other family law cases. The Clinic also does policy work for the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence, among other organizations.

Photo of Sherry ChaikoSherry Chaiko
Administrative Assistant, Clinics and Experiential Learning Programs 
Sherry Chaiko serves as the Clinics and Experiential Learning Administrative Assistant assisting Directors, Staff and Students each semester.

 Jonathan D'SilvaPhoto of Gopal Balachandran
Director, Intellectual Property Law Clinic 
Jonathan D’Silva directs the Intellectual Property Law Clinic located at the Happy Valley LaunchBox. Students gain practical experience in consulting with applicants to and clients of the Entrepreneurial Assistance clinic who have questions and need guidance on all aspects of intellectual property, including patents, copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets, and licensing.  Students also have the opportunity to file applications and response documents with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and the United States Copyright Office.
Photo of Richard SettgastMichael Foreman
Clinic Director, Civil Rights Appellate Clinic
Michael Foreman focuses on appellate representation in civil rights issues and employment discrimination cases and directs Penn State Law's Civil Rights Appellate Clinic, which has served as counsel on numerous cases in United States Supreme Court and the federal appellate courts and is involved in several cases currently pending.  

Angela Lombardo
Academic Programs Coordinator, Clinics and Experiential Learning Programs
Angela Lombardo serves as the Clinics and Experiential Learning Academic Programs Coordinator guiding clinical administrative operations for eleven clinical programs and more than 50 students per semester.

 Photo of Richard SettgastBrit Peterson
Staff Attorney, Entrepreneur Assistance Clinic
Brit Peterson is a staff attorney for the Entrepreneur Assistance Clinic where they specialize in assisting small, minority-owned businesses throughout the Commonwealth.

Ross PiferPhoto of Ross Pifer
Director, Rural Economic Development Clinic, and Director, Agricultural Law Resource and Reference Center
Professor Ross Pifer’s research focuses on shale gas development and the interface between agricultural and residential development. He has been an attorney with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Office of General Counsel, and has advised military personnel and commands in the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Great Britain, and Germany while on active duty with the U.S. Army JAG Corps at the Netherlands Law Center.

Bethany ScholsSunni Reitmyer
Paralegal, Intellectual Property Clinic                                                                                                         Sunni Reitmyer has worked with the Intellectual Property Law Clinic since February 2023. She provides support to the IP Clinic throughout the patent application process, including assisting and instructing clinical students in conducting legal research, filing utility and design patent applications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), and docketing patent application prosecution deadlines. She also assists the Clinic Director as needed. She has been a paralegal since 2013 and has worked exclusively in the field of intellectual property since 2010.

Bethany ScholsBethany N. Schols
Executive Director, Anuncia Donecia Songsong Manglona Lab for Gender and Economic Equity 
Bethany Schols is the inaugural Executive Director of the Anuncia Donecia Songsong Manglona Lab for Gender and Economic Equity. She is active as a volunteer advocate for women’s rights and gender equity, and has, throughout her career, volunteered as a mock trial judge and moot court judge for various programs.

Geoffrey R. ScottPhoto of Geoffry Scott
Director, Arts, Sports and Entertainment Law Clinic
Geoffrey Scott is a Fellow with the the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies in London, and is the founder and supervisor of the Penn State Law Arts, Sports and Entertainment Law Clinic.

Photo of Thomas ScharbaughTom Sharbaugh
Director, Entrepreneur Assistance Clinic
Tom Sharbaugh is director of the Entrepreneur Assistance Clinic, which students represent entrepreneurs, startups and nonprofit organizations in a setting similar to a small law firm. Sharbaugh has been a business lawyer and partner for over 26 years in the Philadelphia office of the Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP law firm. In recent years, he has been active writing and speaking about raising capital for early-stage businesses.

Photo of Richard SettgastRichard G. Settgast
Superviser, Indigent Criminal Justice Trial Clinic
Richard G. Settgast supervises the Indigent Criminal Justice Practicum. Richard is an assistant public defender in Centre County, Pennsylvania, where he represents a wide range of clients from the date of initial charge through trial, sentencing, and appeal.

 Veronica T. ThronsonPhoto of Gopal Balachandran
Visiting Clinical Professor and Interim Director of the Center for Immigrants’ Rights Clinic 
Veronica Tobar Thronson is a Clinical Professor of Law & Director of the Immigration Law Clinic at Michigan State University College of Law in East Lansing, MI where she also teaches Domestic Violence Law, Family Law: Marriage & Divorce, and Immigration and Nationality Law.

Photo of Michele VollmerMichele Vollmer
Director, Veterans and Servicemembers Legal Clinic
Associate Dean, Clinics and Experiential Learning - Michele Vollmer is the director of the Veterans and Servicemembers Legal Clinic. Vollmer, who is accredited with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, previously served as a senior counsel in the Division of Enforcement for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and was a partner in a law firm practicing commercial litigation.


Shoba WadhiaShoba Sivaprasad Wadhia (on leave)
Director, Center for Immigrants' Rights Clinic 
Shoba Sivaprasad Wadhia is the director of the Center for Immigrants’ Rights Clinic (CIRC), where students produce practitioner toolkits, white papers, and primers of national impact on behalf of client organizations.  CIRC provides community outreach and education on immigration topics and  legal support in individual cases of immigrants challenging deportation. 

Stephanie Wilusz Photo of Gopal Balachandran
Staff Attorney, Entrepreneur Assistance Clinic 
Stephanie Wilusz is a staff attorney for the Entrepreneur Assistance Clinic. Prior to joining Penn State Law, Stephanie previously worked as a business attorney for the law firm McQuaide Blasko in State College, Pennsylvania.