Niya Fonville to lead law school’s externship program

Photo of Niya Fonville posing

RALEIGH — Campbell Law School Dean J. Rich Leonard has announced that Niya Fonville has been promoted to Director of Externships effective July 1, 2020. 

Fonville, who joined Campbell Law School in 2018 as associate director of the Career and Professional Development Center, will also serve as an adjunct faculty member in her new role. As Director of Externships, she is charged with overseeing the teaching and administration of the law school’s robust externship program throughout the year — fall, spring and summer terms. 

“With more than a decade as an attorney with Legal Aid of North Carolina, Niya brings a wealth of experience to her new role,” Leonard said. “As a member of several committees of our state and local bar associations, she brings so many connections within the legal community and a wealth of experience that will contribute greatly to our students. I look forward to working with her to bring our already extensive externship program to the next level.”

Fonville is excited to transition into this new role. “It allows me to combine my passion for developing the next generation of lawyers with my love for the practice of law,” she said. “I am hopeful that this is another method to ensure our students thrive as professionals once leaving Campbell Law.”

Campbell Law’s Externship program is large and well developed, with more than 250 sites, serving more than 85% of the student population. The director provides oversight of field placements for academic credit, ensuring the compliance of American Bar Association (ABA) accrediting standards and regularly teaches the classroom components and other related workshops. 

The director, as a member of the Career Center staff, works closely with other staff to perform the critical functions of the career center, including counseling of diverse students and alumni, special programming and outreach to potential employers and administration, in a fast-paced, service-oriented, student-focused office.

“Niya will bring so much passion and energy to this role as she intentionally develops both curriculum and connections to create robust experiential learning opportunities that make good lawyers,” said Assistant Dean of Career and Professional Development Kala Taylor. “Campbell Law students will greatly benefit from her creativity and leadership as our new Director of Externships.” 

Prior to joining Campbell Law, Fonville worked for more than a decade with Legal Aid of North Carolina, where she was supervising attorney and staff attorney and helped some of the state’s most vulnerable citizens at times of greatest need.

Fonville was recently elected to the North Carolina Bar Association (NCBA)’s Board of Governors. She is a past co-chair of the NCBA Minorities in the Profession Committee and 2019 recipient of the NCBA Citizen Lawyer Award. 

Fonville also chairs the Wake County Bar Association’s (WCBA) Committee for Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion and is a member of the N.C. Equal Access to Justice Foundation Board, WCBA Board of Directors, WCBA Public Service Committee, the Capital City Lawyers Association, the North Carolina Association of Black Lawyers and the NCBA’s Pro Bono committee.

In addition to her professional duties, Fonville has volunteered as a mentor with numerous law schools for the past eight years in helping to prepare students for their careers and serving their communities.

Fonville, a native of New Bern, graduated summa cum laude from Salem College (receiving its 2020 Young Alumna Award) and is a cum laude graduate of the University of Miami School of Law. An avid reader, she has committed much of her time to ensure all children within our community can have the opportunity to read and foster a love of books. She volunteers weekly with Read and Feed and hopes to one day operate her own Book Mobile.