Nick’s letter to his scholarship donor, Mrs. Lois Halliday

Dear Mrs. Halliday,

When I applied to law schools in 2006, I was looking forward to getting away from Ann Arbor.  Having grown up in Southeast Michigan, I wanted a new experience in a new city.  While I was thrilled with my acceptance to Michigan Law, it was your scholarship that made the choice to return to Michigan so easy.  I have not regretted that decision for a moment, and I want to express my gratitude for your generosity.

For the past year and a half, I have worked with the Michigan Innocence Clinic.  We represent individuals who are innocent of the crimes for which they are incarcerated.  Last year, we took on the case of Dwayne Provience, who was convicted of murder in 2000.  I worked on his case last fall along with several other students.  We found new evidence – never before presented to Mr. Provience – that he was in fact innocent of the crime, and that other individuals had committed the murder.  Mr. Provience was released from prison on November 3, 2009, after spending over 9 years in prison for a crime he did not commit.  Without some of the work I did on the case, he might still be in prison.  And without your support, I might never have been able to do that work.  So I am not the only one grateful for your generosity.

I have taken a job in Washington, D.C., and will be moving there after graduation.  I have had a wonderful three years here at Michigan, and your assistance made that possible.  I promise to show the same generosity to the Michigan Law community in the future.  Once again, thank you.


Nick Cheolas
University of Michigan Law School
J.D., 2010


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