Jacob Fishman
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My Story

Attending law school was a long-time dream of Jacob Fishman’s. But after completing his undergraduate degree in psychology, he took a break to save money and spent eight months teaching, backpacking, and working on a farm in Africa. He completed the combined Juris Doctorate/ Master of Science in Law and Public Policy (JD/MS) degree in May 2017.

This is Jacob’s Northeastern story…

“Public policy involves a different kind of writing and other kinds of rigors and routines.”

My Path
Why Law and Public Policy?

Jacob decided to pursue the combined JD/MS degree for two reasons.

“First, I was and am interested in getting involved in policy work one day. Second, it seemed smart to get the master’s degree out of the way now while I’m already in school pursuing a JD, rather than returning to school years down the line.”

Photo Credit: Eric Winter/Northeastern University
Transformative Coursework
  • LPSC 7311 Strategizing Public Policy
  • PPUA 7673 Capstone in Public Policy and Urban Affairs

In LPSC 7311 “Strategizing Public Policy,” Jacob acquired a well-rounded perspective on the steps needed to make policies move. He also studied food systems in depth during a course devoted to the topic.

His PPUA 7673 public policy capstone project dovetailed his passion for food systems and policy. His group researched the idea of placing food waste disposers throughout the city for Greenovate Boston. They looked at the proposition from every angle: potential tax incentives, the feasibility of installing disposals, building codes, desirability for residents and landlords, and cost savings for the city.

Photo Credit: Brooks Canaday/Northeastern University

Working closely with professor Christopher Bosso, Jacob researched nanotechnology in the food system and a life-cycle analysis of compact fluorescent lamps.

“We looked at the pros and cons of using technology involving these incredibly small particles and materials. We examined the policy angles and considered the topic ethically, legally, and morally.”

Other Research Projects

Jacob also served as a research assistant for professor Wendy Parmet, conducting work on First Amendment issues in healthcare.

He specifically focused on laws that ban doctors from asking patients about their gun ownership status, as well as the public health response to the most recent Ebola outbreak.

Experiential Learning

Jacob completed four co-ops in the legal field through the JD program.

“I absolutely think that the experiential aspect of Northeastern will help me better apply my skills and enact change when I enter the job market. Every practicing attorney has told me that you don’t actually learn how to be a lawyer until you are one, and I think the co-ops have helped give me a leg up in that respect.”

Photo Credit: Eric Winter/Northeastern University
Next Steps

When Jacob graduated in May 2017, he already had a job lined up in Baltimore. He is the judicial clerk for the Honorable Susan Souder of the Baltimore County Circuit Court.

After completing the two-year clerkship, Jacob says he would like to work in city or state government.

Matthew Modoono/Northeastern University
This was Jacob's Northeastern Pathway... Where will yours lead?

Learn more at:

School of Public Policy and Urban AffairsNortheastern University