Host Equal Justice Works Fellows & Law Students

Become a Host Organization


Design-Your-Own Fellowship

Designing your own Fellowship project presents a unique opportunity for you to create your dream job. This Fellowship opportunity allows you to leverage your law degree in service of a community or cause of your choice. We’re here to support you each step of the way through the application process.

To design your own project, our application requires a project proposal, personal statement, two letters of recommendation, a résumé, and information from your host organization. Together, you and your host organization submit the required components for your application.

Fellowship Overview & Benefits

  • Forge your own path by designing a project that addresses an issue and community you care most passionately about serving
  • Partner with the organization of your choice to propose an innovative legal project
  • Two-year Fellowship term
  • $57,000+ salary depending on location (determined by organization and equivalent to that of a similarly qualified and experienced lawyer at the organization)
  • Health insurance, fringe benefits, and up to $5,000 in loan repayment assistance
  • Each fall, join all current Equal Justice Works Fellows in Washington, D.C. for the Leadership Development Training, a three-day training and networking event

Applications open May 2023

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Quick Facts

  • 85% of Equal Justice Works Fellows remain in public service positions following their Fellowships
  • 70+ new Design-Your-Own Fellows join the Equal Justice Works community each year
  • Thanks to the incredible work of Fellows, more people have access to critical legal services and we have more thriving communities. Ernest LaMont Greer
    Greenberg Traurig, LLP
  • 297 clients served, on average, by an Equal Justice Works Fellow over the course of their project

Still have questions? Email us at
[email protected]

How it works...

1 Check to make sure you’re eligible

All applicants must…

  • Graduate from an Equal Justice Works Member Law School  prior to September 2024.
  • Not have held a full-time, permanent, public interest lawyer position previously, including any other major legal fellowship. Applicants coming from bridge/gap fellowships or clerkships, other Equal Justice Works Fellowship Programs, or the private sector are eligible to apply.
  • Partner with an eligible legal services organization and work collaboratively on the project design.
  • Design an innovative project that addresses an unmet legal need in an underserved community

2 Identify the Issue

Identify the issues that resonate with your passions, your goals, and the needs of your community

Design-Your-Own Fellows address a broad array of pressing legal issues, from family law and community economic development to LGBTQ+ rights and immigration. Browse Fellow profiles to see what issues other Design-Your-Own Fellows are addressing through their work.

Meet Our Fellows

View all

Tiffany Uke
Photo of Tiffany Uke

Community/Economic Development, Housing/Homelessness

Tiffany Uke

Hosted by
Legal Aid of NorthWest Texas

Sponsored by
Texas Access to Justice Foundation Richard L. Tate Rural Justice Fellowship

Joe Philipson
Photo of Joe Philipson

Economic Justice, Immigrant Populations

Joe Philipson

Hosted by
Bet Tzedek Legal Services

Sponsored by
Fish & Richardson P.C., Microsoft Corporation

Alton Wang
Photo of Alton Wang

Civil Rights/Civil Liberties, Voting Rights/Electoral Participation

Alton Wang

Hosted by
Common Cause

Sponsored by
The Lorenzini Family Foundation

3 Find Your Host Organization

Equal Justice Works does not match Fellows with their host organizations; rather, Fellowship candidates and organizations work together to design the project and complete the application. Candidates may find prospective host organizations in many ways:

  • Contact organizations where you have previously interned
  • Search job boards and directories like the Public Service Jobs Directory (PSJD), the National Legal Aid & Defender Association (NLADA), Idealist, and your law school’s career services office
  • Follow Equal Justice Works on Twitter and LinkedIn, where we regularly share organizations’ calls for Fellowship applications

View All Host Organizations

View all

Check back later for additional host organizations.

4 Design the Fellowship

Work with your host organization to design your Fellowship

Our top tips for an excellent Fellowship proposal:

  • Paint a picture of the specific issue and community your work will address, weaving in both data and personal stories.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the target community by building in opportunities for collaboration with existing groups into your proposal.
  • Consider whether the project will make a real difference in the issue area, and make sure the proposed strategies are attainable.
  • Fellowship projects are meant to impact a large number of people through the implementation of an innovative program-consider the sustainability of the project beyond the Fellowship term.

Next Steps

After you apply…

After you submit your application, it will be reviewed by Equal Justice Works staff and Fellow Alumni. High-scoring applications are selected to interview with sponsors between December and April. Fellowships are awarded on a rolling basis throughout this period.

After the Fellowship

Connect with Our Alumni Network

After successfully completing your commitment as an Equal Justice Works Fellow, you become an alum of the organization. You’ll be joining a network of 2,000+ passionate public interest lawyers continuing to work as key contributors to our shared vision of achieving our nation’s promise of equal justice for all.

Learn More

Images on this page depict 2012 Fellow Cynthia Cornelius at her former host organization, Cabrini Green Legal Aid, where she now serves as Director of Client and Community Services.

Interested in hosting a Design-Your-Own Fellow?

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Get Help Managing Your Student Debt

For many law school graduates, student debt is the single largest barrier to pursuing a career in public interest law. View our Student Debt Resources to learn more about managing your debt load.

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