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Daniela Grisch

(aka "DG 4/99" on our pages)

Photo of Daniela Grisch


In cooperation with the student members of Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College's International Law Society, during the winter of 1999, Capriotti & Associates sponsored a law student from Switzerland.

Using an H-3 visa, which permits temporary employment to aid a person to gain training, Daniela worked side-by-side with us for 12 weeks.

With the goal of learning the U.S. immigration laws, she was instrumental in improving the assortment of informational pages we maintain on the web. She worked hard to explain the very technical law and procedure in her second language, English.

We wish to thank Daniela for her invaluable contribution to the WWW information available to you.

More about Daniela and how to contact her:

Daniela was born in Maennedorf, Switzerland, on June 10, 1975. She is studying law at the University of Zurich in Switzerland and visited the University Sart Tillman in Liege, Belgium with the ERASMUS/SOCRATES program (a student exchange program). She plans to graduate during winter 2000/01.


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Here are some of Daniela's thoughts about her experience with us:

My Internship with an International Law Firm in the U.S.

by Daniela Grisch

1. Introduction

For about one and a half years, I have been an active participant of ELSA ( European Law Student Association ) and I had heard a lot about their STEP program ( which supports European law students in doing their legal placement in another country ), when in spring 1998 I received the list of the internships available in Europe and the U.S. for the summer of 1998 throughout the spring of 1999. There were just four openings in the U.S. when I applied for a legal placement, but I decided to give it a try - for I was the most interested in the U.S. legal system - and I was one of the lucky few.

After having received the good news from Mr. Capriotti at the end of August, the difficult part started: We had to work on my visa application for a H-3 visa (which is a nonimmigrant visa allowing aliens to attend a traineeship in the U.S.). Like most of the nonimmigrant visas (not so for the tourist visa) the H-3 visa requires a lot of paper work. While applying for my H-3 visa I was studying in Liege, Belgium, which made the process a little bit more difficult. But, by the time I got home to Zurich to prepare everything for my stay in Portland my visa had been approved. I finally arrived in Portland on January 11, 1999 and started working with Capriotti & Associates the following day.

During my stay in Portland, I lived with Mrs. Petrick who was like a mother and a very good friend to me. I was welcomed heartily and was immersed in the life of an American household.

2. The work of an International Lawyer in Immigration Law

In the U.S. there are numerous lawyers engaged in immigration law. They have among themselves the nationwide organization A.I.L.A., (American Immigration Lawyers Association).

Mr. Capriotti not only focuses on international law in general, but especially in immigration law. For many years Mr. Capriotti has been practicing exclusively immigration law. He provides clients with immigration options, naturalization, information on nonimmigrant visas, and consular process. His work includes giving information and advice to his clients concerning their immigration situation. He prepares petitions and applications for all kinds of visas. And, thus, assists the clients in all kinds of steps involved from consular process and obtaining a visa stamp to citizenship. Besides, he is also involved in all the other parts faced by an international lawyer like appeals, trials, or even assistance in removal / deportation proceedings.

Further, Mr. Capriotti works on a case-by-case basis with lawyers who work primarily in other fields of law. Sometimes, the client's individual cases make it necessary to consult an immigration attorney. For example, to explore the options of work visas for a big sales company, or even to explore the immigration consequences of a criminal conviction for a client in a criminal case.

Finally, Mr. Capriotti also teaches as an Adjunct Professor in Immigration Law at the Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College.

3. My Internship

My work as trainee for Mr. Capriotti included various tasks, making the internship even more interesting. First of all, I learned the basics in immigration law. I sat in on client consultations and assisted with application/petition preparation. Briefly, I got to know the basic work of an immigration lawyer, got the chance to assist in some legal tasks. Thus, I learned a lot about U.S. immigration law in a very short time.

By updating and revising existing web pages and creating new web pages, I applied the knowledge I gained on immigration law while sitting in during client consultations, while attending Mr. Capriotti's class and while assisting in the preparation of different visa applications. I also learned more about the Internet and its possibilities.

Furthermore, I had the chance to sit in on some hearings at the Immigration Court, and I joined Mr. Capriotti at an A.I.L.A. meeting. Both of the opportunities gave me a fairly good impression of the American Legal System.

In addition, I assisted Prof. Capriotti with his law class at the Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College. I experienced slightly their way of teaching and learning, and their campus life, which is quite different from what I've experienced in Zurich, Switzerland and Liege, Belgium. Besides attending Prof. Capriotti's class, I availed myself of every chance to listen to speeches from visiting law professors from all over the world, which broadened my horizons even more! During my time at the Northwestern School of Law of Lewis & Clark College, I met a lot of Americans, but also some foreign (visiting) students. I made some real good friends, with whom I spent most of my free time and some unforgettable weekends!

4. Summary

From a legal point of view, I learned about the work of a U.S. lawyer, the U.S. law system, immigration law in detail, and law schools. Further, I was able to extend my knowledge and experience with regard to work on web pages and on the internet in general.

Socially, my stay in Portland was a great and valuable experience. I've learned a lot about the American culture, which is quite diverse, and the American way of thinking and living. Having met some great friends, it brightened my days (especially the rainy ones) and made my stay even more enjoyable.

In short terms, I'm glad and lucky to have been able to participate in this kind of internship, and experience another culture.

DG 04/99

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The information given in this Web site is intended as general information only.
It does not substitute for the services of an immigration attorney in a specific case.

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