Pro Bono Clearinghouse Internship

November 18, 2022

Pro Bono Clearinghouse

New York Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI), a community-driven civil rights organization, seeks an undergraduate student to work as an intern in its Pro Bono Clearinghouse for the spring of 2023. This will be a hybrid in-person and work from home position, and NYLPI will ensure that the intern will have the necessary technology.

The Organization

For more than 40 years, NYLPI has been a leading civil rights advocate for New Yorkers marginalized by race, immigration status, poverty, neighborhood pollution, and disabilities. NYLPI pioneered the practice of community lawyering in the five boroughs of New York City.  These communities shape our priorities, and their struggles for justice demand innovative solutions. Our interdisciplinary teams of advocates use every tool available – community organizing, impact litigation and individual representation, policy advocacy, media, pro bono partnerships, and public education – to solve seemingly intractable problems, develop leaders, and build collective power to achieve justice. We strive to create equal access to health care, achieve equality of opportunity and self-determination for people with disabilities, ensure immigrant opportunity, strengthen local nonprofits, and secure environmental justice for low-income communities of color. 

The Clearinghouse provides community groups and nonprofit organizations with free legal assistance by drawing on hundreds of volunteer lawyers from New York’s most prestigious law firms and corporate law departments. Last year, the Clearinghouse placed over 200 transactional and litigation pro bono matters with firms. The Clearinghouse also produces a series of innovative and impactful workshops for nonprofit leaders. Through this work, NYLPI has strengthened the infrastructure and increased the capacity of community services across the city.

The Position

The Clearinghouse intern will report to the assistant director of Pro Bono Programs and support the work of the director and program associate. The intern will assist with the day to day operations of the Clearinghouse including monitoring and tracking the status of placed cases with clients and attorneys. Clients include nonprofits, community-based organizations and legal services organizations. The position provides a unique opportunity to interact with a large variety of public interest legal organizations as well as lawyers and pro bono coordinators from some of New York City’s prominent law firms.

Responsibilities include:  Outreach to community groups about our pro bono legal service; tracking the status of placed cases; attending placement meetings; interacting with firms and associates about the importance of pro bono work; and assisting with the production of newsletters.

Qualifications:  Applicants should be interested in gaining exposure to the legal needs of nonprofits as well as to law firms. Strong organizational, interpersonal and solid writing skills are essential. Proficiency in computer applications such as Microsoft Word, Outlook, Excel and databases a plus. Applicants must possess a commitment to public interest and must also fit into a team-oriented environment. 

Applicants should be available to intern 1.5 to 2 days per week for 12 to 16 hours per week as a combination of in-person and remote work. Please note that NYLPI requires that employees and interns demonstrate proof of vaccination against COVID-19. A stipend is available.

Applicants should send a cover letter, a resume and a writing sample to: Heidi Kim, Assistant Director, Pro Bono Clearinghouse, New York Lawyers for the Public Interest, 151 West 30th Street, 11th Floor, New York, New York 10001 via e-mail to [email protected]. Please include “Clearinghouse internship” in email subject line. 

We strongly encourage candidates fluent in multiple languages and candidates from historically oppressed groups to apply.  We are committed to advancing social justice and civil rights in our advocacy, and we value the dynamism and perspective that staff diversity brings to the work and culture of the office. We strive to promote behaviors, attitudes and policies that enable us to work inclusively and effectively in cross-cultural situations with clients, co-workers, and community partners.  We actively recruit and seek to grow and maintain a staff that is diverse along many axes, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, and national origin; disability; socioeconomic background; and sexual orientation and gender identity. 

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