What You Need to Know: Applying to the 2024 Rural Summer Legal Corps

/ Blog Post

Photo of the 2019 RSLC cohort of Student Fellows

The Rural Summer Legal Corps (RSLC)—a partnership between Equal Justice Works and Legal Services Corporation (LSC)—will support 50 dedicated law students in serving rural communities this 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 $7,000 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 in summer 2024. 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. Fellows receive travel accommodations and lodging for the training in Washington, D.C., as well as 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 may 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 or Attorney Fellows after graduation. For example, Ana Laurel, a 2018 Equal Justice Works Fellow in our Disaster Recovery Legal Corps and current staff attorney at her host site, Texas RioGrande Legal Aid, previously served in the Rural Summer Legal Corps; and Emily Neely, a 2021 Rural Summer Legal Corps Fellow, was an Equal Justice Works Fellow who designed her own project providing mediation and other forms of alternative dispute resolution in West Virginia to low-income families impacted by the opioid epidemic.

Am I 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].

Submit your application before the deadline on February 13, 2024, at 11:59 p.m. ET!

Learn more about becoming an Equal Justice Works Fellow