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Summer 2018 Legal Internships in NYC

The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law is a nonpartisan public policy and law institute that focuses on the fundamental issues of democracy and justice. Our work ranges from voting rights to campaign finance reform, from reducing mass incarceration to Constitutional protection in the fight against terrorism. A singular institution – part think tank, part public interest law firm, part advocacy group – the Brennan Center combines scholarship, legislative and legal advocacy, and communications to win meaningful, measurable change in the public sector.

We seek law students to work alongside staff in our New York office on the Brennan Center’s policy advocacy, research, and litigation initiatives. Activities may include legal and policy analysis; legislative drafting at federal, state, and local levels; administrative and legislative advocacy; public education and scholarship; and litigation in trial and appellate courts. The Brennan Center’s interns are integral to all aspects of our work, including programmatic and strategic planning. We strive to offer a fun and intellectually-challenging legal intern experience that supports and supplements the vital advocacy offered by the Brennan Center. The internship lasts for 10 weeks. We may accommodate a limited number of split summers.

Qualifications: Excellent legal research, analysis, and writing skills; initiative, imagination, and versatility; and a passion for our issues.

The Center’s Program Areas

Democracy Program (New York based only)

The Democracy Program seeks to perfect the ideal of representative self-government by advocating for public policies and institutions that reflect a diverse, engaged, and energetic democracy. The Program collaborates with grassroots groups, advocacy organizations, and reform-minded government officials to promote policies that eliminate barriers to full and equal political participation.

Assignments will be drawn from work on voting rights (including the rights of students and people with felony convictions); reform of election administration (including voter registration modernization, ballot design, and defensive work against photo ID and other practices likely to suppress the vote or have a disproportionate impact on communities of color); campaign finance reform at the federal, state, and local level; and protecting the independence, impartiality, and integrity of the courts.

Justice Program (New York based only)

The Justice Program seeks to secure our nation’s promise of “equal justice for all” by creating a rational, effective, and fair justice system. Its priority focus is to reform the criminal justice system so that it better reduces crime and reduces mass incarceration. The program uses economics to produce new empirical analysis and innovative policy solutions to advance this critical goal. It also works to ensure a fair civil legal system.

Liberty and National Security Program (New York and Washington, DC based)

The Brennan Center’s Liberty and National Security (LNS) Program fights to preserve constitutional values in the post-9/11 world. Our work centers on innovative policy recommendations, litigation, and public advocacy to ensure that our nation’s commitment to national security comports with the rule of law and our fundamental freedoms.

We are currently focused on protecting privacy rights in the digital age (e.g., legal challenges to various forms of warrantless electronic surveillance), on racial and religious profiling by law enforcement agencies (e.g., “Countering Violent Extremism” (CVE) programs and police surveillance of American Muslim communities), and on combating excessive government secrecy (e.g., overclassification of documents and “secret law”).

How to Apply: Visit http://brennancenter.applytojob.com/apply/LZzaXEEJgQ/Summer-2018-Legal-Internships-In-NYC and upload all of the following:

  1. a cover letter explaining which particular programs or projects they are interested in joining: Democracy Program (NY), Justice Program (NY), Liberty & National Security (NY or DC), or DC Office;
  2. a current law school transcript (1Ls may send the transcript separately, as soon as it is available);
  3. a legal writing sample;
  4. a current resume; and
  5. contact information for three references.

Applications should be submitted through this website. 

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. We encourage interested students to apply early, as the position will be filled once qualified candidates are found.

The Brennan Center, an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer, is strongly committed to diversity and welcomes applicants of all races, ethnicities, genders, and sexual orientations, gender identity and expression, including people who have been previously incarcerated.

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