Post-graduate fellowships are a great way to launch a public interest career. Fellowship organizations allow applicants to address the legal needs of under-served populations. They typically last for one or two years, and applicants receive a stipend or salary along with other benefits. There are a few different types of fellowships, but two are highlighted below:
Project based fellowships allow applicants to develop a specific project that addresses a legal need with the help of a sponsoring organization. This requires applicants to find a host organization and the applicant then submits a project proposal to the fellowship organization detailing which specific population this project aims to serve and how this project aligns with the host organization’s objectives.
Many nonprofit organizations have their own fellowship programs that allow applicants to work on projects that have already been developed. This is a great option for applicants who would like to work for a specific organization or demographic.
A typical fellowship will have a deadline sometime in the fall prior to the fellowship start date. When applying to a fellowship it is important to notate the deadlines and plan accordingly. Spring and summer of that same year will be spent locating a host organization and putting together a proposal (if applicable) and completing the fellowship application.
Here are some resources through the National Association of Law Placement (NALP) that can help give some guidance in applying for a fellowship, and don’t hesitate to reach out to the Career Development Office (CDO) for more support in exploring and applying for fellowships!
Here is a short list of a few public interest fellowships that are available along with links to their respective websites. This is not an exhaustive list, and applicants should consider doing their own searches on sites such as psjd.org, usa.gov, and simplicity.com