There are some lawyers who are consumed by righting the wrongs a client has experienced. They work tirelessly to channel their frustration about systemic flaws into advocacy to improve a client’s situation.
Miami Law alumnus Kevin Probst is one of those lawyers. A former Miami Scholar who completed his studies in 2007, Probst is using his background and skills to make a difference for children and families in South Florida. He works for Legal Services of Greater Miami (LSGMI) as an attorney in the Health and Income Maintenance unit.
Prior to attending law school, Probst worked as a special education teacher. During that time he realized that he was spending a disproportionate amount of time out of the classroom in due process hearings. At the hearings he was expected to testify in support of the school district’s decisions that he thought were adverse to his students' success and progress.
In his third year of teaching, he realized it was time for him to switch careers so that he could be on the other side of the table advocating on behalf of children with disabilities.
Probst expected law school to be both challenging and rewarding, but he underestimated the extent to which his Miami Law experience would exceed those expectations. He received support from his fellow Miami Scholars, section peers, numerous professors, and members of the administration.
While at Miami Law, Probst participated on the Charles C. Papy, Jr. Moot Court Board, Miami Ambassadors, Wrongful Convictions Project, and the Children & Youth Law Clinic.
The importance of advocating on behalf of, and providing a voice to, the most marginalized members of his community was instilled in Probst from a very young age, which was the driving cause of his public interest career. After graduation, he worked for two years as a HOPE post-grad fellow before joining LSGMI as an Equal Justice Works Fellow.
Probst enjoys working at LSGMI because of the opportunity to make a significant difference in his clients’ lives. “On a daily basis, I'm energized by the resilience of my clients, the commitment of my colleagues, and the passion of our supporters, as we work and fight together to ensure equal justice for the most vulnerable children and families in Miami-Dade County,” he said. He also enjoys being a part of an organization comprised of like-minded individuals dedicated to ensuring the concept of equal justice as more than just an aspirational goal.
Probst recently spoke with Miami Law students at a Public Interest Lecture Series, an intimate event in which students speak with individuals who work in various public sector positions. Students had great feedback after speaking with Probst and found his genuine commitment to his clients invigorating.
“In the midst of frenzied studying of midterms, it was so nice to feel inspired by the motivational words of Kevin Probst,” said 1L Carly Starkey. “Learning about the goals of Legal Services of Greater Miami helped remind me why I am in law school and excites me about the opportunities that exist in my future.”
Probst hopes that the next generation of Miami Law graduates will continue to focus on the importance of serving the community with humility and dedication. “Law students should gain as much experience as possible by volunteering and clerking,” he said.