Fellowship Sponsorship 2017

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Job location
1424 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
United States
Organization information
Organization name: 
Community Legal Services
Job type: 
Position Description: 

Community Legal Services, Inc. (CLS) sponsors law students and current judicial clerks for fellowships funded by the Independence Foundation, the Skadden Fellowship Foundation, Equal Justice Works, the Open Society Foundations, the Stoneleigh Foundation, the Borchard Fellowship in Law & Aging, and other fellowship programs (including fellowships offered directly by law schools). Fellows work closely with our experienced staff attorneys and are directly supervised by a more senior attorney. Fellows carry their own caseload and gain valuable experience in providing a wide range of services, from brief advice and counsel to representation at administrative hearings, judicial proceedings, and appeals. Fellows are also deeply involved in our policy and systemic advocacy work. Past fellows have provided crucial advocacy for our clients, contributed greatly to CLS’ development as a legal services organization, and many have become long-term members of our staff.

We encourage applications from all interested persons, especially those with diverse backgrounds and experiences based on age, race, ethnicity, cultural identity, gender, sexual orientation, gender expression, sexual identity, disabilities, socioeconomics, and proficiency in languages other than English.

Applying to become a Fellow:

CLS invites law students beginning their third year, recent law school graduates, and those with judicial clerkships to apply for sponsorship for a fellowship.

For consideration for fellowships that begin in 2017, applications will be accepted through Monday, July 4, 2016.

Interested applicants must submit the following:

Cover letter describing your interest and experience in public interest and poverty law and any ideas you may have for a fellowship proposal. Please note that it is not necessary to have a specific proposal at the application stage. We welcome information about how your background and/or experiences might contribute to the diversity, vitality, and perspective of our staff and legal services practice.
Two brief legal writing samples
Law school transcript
Contact information for three (3) references

We encourage interested applicants to consult with us if they have an idea for a fellowship proposal.

CLS interviews fellowship applicants to evaluate if your interests and background are a match for our program’s needs. If you are selected, CLS will work very closely with you to design the final fellowship proposal to match your interests with the needs of our units and with the requirements of the funder.

CLS does not provide fellowship funding. We will work with you to secure funding from another source, such as a foundation or your law school's own programs.

Resources for those interested in applying for fellowships include:

Bernard Koteen Office of Public Interest Advising at Harvard Law School
Yale Law School: Public Interest Careers Guide and Public Interest Fellowships Guide
Boston College Law School Public Interest Fellowships

Candidates may email any questions about the fellowship application process to Beth Shapiro, Esq., Chair of the Attorney Hiring Committee.

Please note that CLS does not anticipate any open attorney positions in 2016. We are only accepting applications from individuals who are eligible for post-graduate funding from their law school in 2016 or for a foundation-funded public interest law fellowship that would begin in 2017.


Selection criteria that will be considered in evaluating applicants for sponsorship include:

Demonstrated commitment to public interest law;
Experience in or strong interest in representation of low-income individuals and communities;
Excellence in oral, written and legal research skills;
Academic strength;
Proficiency in a non-English language spoken by many of CLS’ clients (desired but not required); and
Anticipated or current Pennsylvania Bar membership

To apply: 

Please submit all applications to www.clsphila.org.

Equal Opportunity Employer
Submission deadline: 
Monday, July 4, 2016