Student Highlight

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Leyla Martinez, B.A. 2018
Tuesday, December 19, 2017

ISHR congratulates Leyla Martinez, a senior majoring in Human Rights, on being featured in a recent video profile by NowThis.

Leyla Martinez is a first-generation student at Columbia’s School of General Studies. She is also the President/Founder of the Beyond the Box Initiative at Columbia University (BTB), which is an organization for current and prospective students who have been directly or indirectly impacted by mass incarceration.

Ms. Martinez is also a criminal justice reform advocate and a founding member of the National Council of Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls (National Council). Leyla has spoken at different Law Schools around the country about the effects of incarceration on women, children and communities. She has also been invited to speak on panel discussions at The White House, Google, UCLA, YouTube, Columbia University and more.

Leyla is a member of the first Justice in Education (JIE) cohort and the first JIE Scholar to be accepted into Columbia University. She is a Program for Academic Leadership and Service Scholar, Gilman Scholar, Joey O’Loughlin Scholar, Mother’s Day Scholar, Women’s Forum Education Fund Fellow, Beyond the Bars Fellow, Earth Institute Center for Environmental Sustainability Fellow and Women’s Independence Scholar.

Click here to watch the NowThis video highlighing Leyla's work and journey.