Malak Shalabi is a recipient of the Academic Year 2020-2021 Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowship. The award provides undergraduate, graduate, and professional school students with financial support to develop fluency in less commonly taught languages (LCTLs) and expertise in the regions in which these languages are spoken. Click here to learn more.
I am a law student with a background in international politics and a growing interest in its intersection with national security policy and constitutional law. My research projects related to torture in the Middle East led me to learning about U.S. programs like extraordinary rendition, discriminatory policing, and government surveillance.
FLAS has funded a large part of my legal education and study of Modern Standard Arabic– which, together, have exposed me to different perspectives on global conflict through media, narrative, and art. The fellowship also equipped me to interpret for political asylum seekers and translate legal documents in immigration proceedings when I worked with immigration attorney Alex Baron in Tukwila.
This past summer, I was a Legal & Advocacy Intern at the organization American Muslims for Palestine, and I am currently a law clerk at the United States Attorneys Office. The FLAS fellowship has been instrumental in building my MSA language skills and expanding my understanding of international and domestic legal issues.