Three incoming students and two current Chadron State College students, all residents of Nebraska, have been accepted to the Rural Law Opportunities Program (RLOP), according to Project Coordinator Kate Pope. Two alternates were also named.

RLOP was approved by the Nebraska State College System Board of Trustees during its September 2016 meeting. Impetus for developing RLOP came from the Nebraska State Bar Association, which said that 11 of Nebraska’s 93 counties have no lawyers at all, and 20 others have three or fewer attorneys. After successfully applying to Chadron State, the RLOP students were chosen following an interview with faculty members. Each of the RLOP students earned a full tuition scholarship. In addition, RLOP participants will be provided with mentoring, NU law school visits and Legal School Admission Test preparation services.

The new students are Abigail Madden of Alliance, Daniel Busenitz of Nenzel, and Zachary Kring of North Platte. The current students are Jori Peters of Mitchell and Lorenzo Lopez of Scottsbluff. The alternates are Taylee Neefe of Hemingford and Blake Booth of Genoa.

Madden has been a member of the National Junior Honor Society, DECA, the Quill and Scroll Journalism Honorary Society, Secretary of Student Council, a cheerleader, and winner of Rotary Youth Leadership Awards. She earned the Principal’s Honor Roll in grades 9-11, and has been an intern at Mediation West, a volunteer with Gering Zion, and completed a mission trip to Kenya in 2018.

Busenitz is active in FFA, 4H, one act plays, has placed at district and conference speech meets, and is active with Mock Court at Cornhusker Boys State. He’s been a member of the National Honor Society since 2017, and has been a Honor Roll student since 2016. He also won the Bausch & Lomb Science Award in 2018. Busenitz is a three-year varsity letter winner in football and basketball with an all-state honorable mention in 2018. He volunteers with community cleaning projects, and at his church.

Kring deferred enrollment at Chadron State to complete a year abroad in Argentina through Rotary. He plans to major in legal studies and is interested in engineering or patent law. He is involved with the First United Methodist Church youth group and has volunteered at Closer to Home and as a math tutor.

At Mitchell High School Peters was a member of the National Honor Society, won the Nebraska School Activities Association Believers and Achievers Award, President of Student Council, Valedictorian, and student of the year. At CSC, Peters plays on the women’s basketball team, volunteers with Chadron Middle School track and field, and was named to the Dean’s List in Fall 2018 and Spring 2019.

Lopez is a transfer student from WNCC. He made the Dean’s List for three semesters at WNCC and President’s list for two semesters. He was in the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society and the National Society of Leadership and Success. In 2019, he was awarded a Phi Theta Kappa scholarship to CSC. Lopez was the Criminal Justice Club Liaison at WNCC, a volunteer for the Doves program, and a volunteer with the United Way for the Day of Caring events in Scottsbluff.

Neefe is a Social Work major and Legal Studies minor. She made the President’s List in 2019, the Dean’s List in 2018 and 2017. She earned a Theatre Assistantship, served on the Platinum Eagle Award Committee, worked as a Resident Advisor, is involved with the Social Work Club, and earned the Rising Sophomore Social Work Award in 2018 and Rising Eagle Worker Award. She was honored at the Governor’s mansion and State Capitol for student excellence in career educational programs.

Booth transferred to CSC and is on the football team. In high school, he lettered and made academic all-state in football and track, was a member of Future Business Leaders of American, 4-H, National Honor Society, was a three sport athlete, and earned a spot on the Academic Honor Roll with Distinction throughout high school.

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