The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

Class of 2020 First-Year Fellow: Sunny Drescher '20

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As a Class of 2020 First-Year Fellow, Sunny Drescher ’20 interns at the District of Columbia Superior Court under the mentorship of Jennifer Chandler ’82.

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Class of 2020 First-Year Fellow, Sunny Drescher ’20, Judge Berk, and law clerks Jesse Goins and Gabrielle Logaglio in chambers. 

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Sarah (Sunny) Drescher hails from Hinesburg, Vermont. After graduating from Champlain Valley Union High School in 2015, Sunny took a gap year to pursue professional equestrian showjumping. Throughout middle and high school, she balanced academics with a demanding equestrian training and competition schedule.

At Dartmouth, Sunny is pursuing a double major in Government and Quantitative Social Science as well as a minor in Public Policy. Since coming to Dartmouth, she has enjoyed being involved in the Dartmouth Endurance Racing Team, the Dartmouth Club Alpine Ski Team, and Colleges Against Cancer/Relay for Life.

As a First-Year Fellow, Sunny interned at the District of Columbia Superior Court under the mentorship of Jennifer Chandler ’82. Sunny’s responsibilities over the summer focused on collecting information about the Domestic Violence Unit at the Superior Court and other Domestic Violence Units across the country. She created a record of the trials Judge Berk had presided over on his Domestic Violence calendar and a spreadsheet to organize the data from his calendar and former judges’ Domestic Violence calendars. In addition to collecting and organizing Superior Court data, Sunny drafted a literature review of research done on Domestic Violence courts in the United States. This involved examining twenty-six studies conducted on different Domestic Violence Units in the U.S. and compiling the information for the Judge.

According to Sunny, “My favorite part of my internship observing Judge Berk and his law clerks deliberate on cases. I learned a lot about judges’ roles and limitations within the justice system. I learned that although judging has some subjective components at times, it is ultimately an objective pursuit of facts and whether the law has been violated. Observing deliberations showed me how judging is both straight-forward and nuanced, and it inspired me to consider a career on the bench myself. I have a much better understanding of lawyers’ objectives and judges’ practices after this experience.”

After graduation, Sunny plans to attend law school and pursue a career in public service.

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