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What You Need to Know: Applying to the 2022 Rural Summer Legal Corps

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The Rural Summer Legal Corps (RSLC)—a partnership between Equal Justice Works and Legal Services Corporation (LSC)—supports 40 dedicated law students in serving rural communities each summer. Participants, called Student Fellows, have a one-of-a-kind opportunity to explore their public interest passions while gaining hands-on experience, all while earning a $5,000 stipend.

Interested in joining this incredible program? Here’s what you need to know about applying to be an RSLC Student Fellow this summer.

Who is eligible?

RSLC is open to current law students who have completed their first year of law school by the start of the program (summer 2022). For some placements, applicants must possess a valid driver’s license and/or access to adequate transportation or have proficiency in a second language.

How do I submit a strong RSLC application?

A standout application will showcase a law student’s passion for public service and access to justice issues. Additionally, a strong display of interest for the project focus area to which you apply also holds significant weight in the decision process. If you have a personal connection to rural communities, highlighting that connection is another way to make a positive impression.

What type of training do RSLC Student Fellows receive?

All RSLC Student Fellows attend an exciting three-day training before their service begins. This training is made up of a series of workshops and panels, networking opportunities, and the chance to connect with and ask questions of the LSC and Equal Justice Works staff. If the training is held in-person, Fellows receive travel accommodations and lodging for the training in Washington, D.C., as well as one-way travel arrangements from the training to each student’s host organization.

What type of work can I expect to complete during my Student Fellowship?

Student Fellows will take on a wide range of responsibilities regardless of the specific project focus area of their host site. These assignments can include direct client services, client intake consultations/interviewing with supervising attorneys, legal writing opportunities, and court appearances. Projects may also include non-legal assignments such as community outreach, education, and pro bono coordination. This summer, some projects are in-person, while others will be conducted remotely. You can find a list of host organizations and their position descriptions on the Equal Justice Works website here.

Can the RSLC lead to long-term opportunities following law school graduation?

Yes! Several Student Fellows have been hired by their previous host sites as full-time staff attorneys after graduation. For example, Ana Laurel, a 2018 Equal Justice Works Fellow in our Disaster Recovery Legal Corps, previously served in the Rural Summer Legal Corps, and Kevin Hempy, a 2020 Equal Justice Works Fellow, is now a Fellow who designed his own project at Prairie State Legal Services focused on improving employment prospects and financial stability through criminal records relief.

Are you ready to apply? 

Applicants will be asked to provide a résumé, a personal statement describing their professional qualifications and interest in the program, and their top three host organization choices. For more information about program eligibility and requirements, visit our website or email us at [email protected]

Be sure to submit your application before the deadline on February 14, 2022 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

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About Equal Justice Works

Equal Justice Works is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that creates opportunities for lawyers to transform their passion for equal justice into a lifelong commitment to public service. As the nation’s largest facilitator of opportunities in public interest law, Equal Justice Works brings together an extensive network of law students, lawyers, nonprofit legal aid organizations, and supporters to promote public service and inspire a lifelong commitment to equal justice.

Learn more about becoming an Equal Justice Works Fellow