Carolina Rivera Nelson

Civil Rights / LGBTQ+ Rights Judicial Clerkship
Class of 2022
photo of Carolina Rivera

Carolina (Caro) Rivera Nelson serves as a law clerk to Judge Jesus Bernal of the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California in Riverside, CA. After the district court clerkship, she will clerk for Chief Judge Mary Murguia of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Immediately after law school, Caro worked with MALDEF (the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund) in Washington, D.C., as a Gallogly Family Foundation Public Interest Law Fellow. She focused on advocating for Latino and English-Learner students affected by COVID-19 learning losses and trauma.

At Texas Law, Caro was vice-president of the Public Interest Law Association, served on the William Wayne Justice Center’s student advisory board, was associate editor of the Texas Journal on Civil Liberties & Civil Rights and a staff editor of the Texas Hispanic Journal of Law and Policy, and was an organizer for Change It Up!, Pro Bono in January, and GRITS, the annual student-led Getting Radical in the South conference. She was a society coordinator for the law school’s Society Program and a teaching assistant for Professor Shavonne Henderson’s Race in the Law course. She volunteered for a wide range of pro bono activities through the Mithoff Pro Bono Program, participated in the Immigration Clinic and the Civil Rights Clinic, and interned with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid in Edinburg, TX and RAICES (the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services) in Austin.

Caro spent the summer after her first year working on voting rights and immigration issues with MALDEF in Washington, D.C.  She spent the summer after her second year working on immigration litigation with the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project in San Francisco, and also volunteered with Kids in Need of Defense conducting Know Your Rights presentations at an immigration detention facility in Midland, TX.