Philosophy Pre-Law Alumnus to Intern with Supreme Court Justice

Posted on 4/11/2018 2:49:31 PM

Richard Bielawa, who graduated from IUP in December 2015 with a BA in philosophy/pre-law (summa cum laude), will serve as an intern this summer at the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Bielawa is currently a second-year law student at Duquesne University School of Law.

“My internship will be focused on researching and writing about issues before the Court,” Bielawa said. “I will be working on a bench memo that will summarize the facts of the case, the lower court’s determinations, the relevant law, and the parties’ arguments. The bench memo will be used by the Court when hearing oral arguments.

Richard Bielawa“While interning with the Court, I will be exposed to a wide range of legal issues including state and federal constitutional issues, criminal law issues, civil issues, as well as evidentiary and procedural issues."

While at IUP, Beliewa’s philosophical interests ranged from metaphysics to ethics. “I developed a deep passion for philosophy and its implications on society,” he said. “Wanting to put philosophy to use in the real world, I choose to become a lawyer. To me the law was philosophically premised, and it was flexible enough to accommodate philosophical considerations when making legal determinations. Viewing the law this way, in addition to attacking my legal studies and analysis with the thinking skills acquired in philosophy, has provided me with much academic and professional success while in law school. Philosophy taught me how to think, and this has proved invaluable.”

Bielawa is a research assistant for the Carol Los Mansmann Chair in Faculty Scholarship, Professor Jane Moriarty, and is currently ranked first in his class.

Department of Philosophy