The National Center for Youth Law (NCYL) advances justice by defending the rights of children and improving the systems impacting their lives. We focus on complex challenges that disproportionately impact children and communities of color and on solutions that require multiple public systems to change their policies, practices and culture.
Our work encompasses policy advocacy, research, technical assistance, public awareness, and impact litigation in the areas of child welfare, education access and equity, commercial sexual exploitation of children, juvenile justice, the school-to-prison pipeline and immigration
NCYL is committed to fostering, cultivating, and preserving a culture of equity, diversity, and inclusion. We built our reputation and organizational success on embracing and encourage the collective sum of individual differences among our staff.
The National Center for Youth Law (NCYL) seeks law students to work in its Oakland and Washington DC offices during Fall 2019, and Spring & Summer 2020. Law clerks will work closely with NCYL attorneys on projects impacting low-income children and youth.
NCYL is interested in applicants with a strong commitment to social justice. In particular, applicants should demonstrate interest in protecting the rights of low-income children and youth. Under the mentorship of their supervising attorneys, clerks will research novel issues within youth law, write legal and policy memoranda, and assist in ongoing litigation, policy, and legislative efforts.
The minimum required time commitment for Fall 2019 and Spring 2020 is 10-15 hours per week; applicants for full-time externships will also be considered.
The required time commitment for Summer 2020 is 37.5 hours per week for ten weeks.
Education Civil Rights Alliance Clerkship
The DC office is also home to NCYL’s Education Civil Rights Alliance (ECRA), a diverse and experienced group of litigators, policy counsel, organizers, educator organizations, professional associations, and civil rights organizations that are committed to protecting the civil rights of marginalized students. The DC office intends to hire one law clerk to support the ECRA’s work. This law clerk will support aspects of the following ECRA projects:
• Launching state and local campaigns aimed at eliminating illegal education inequity, harassment, and discrimination, including the inequitable distribution of resources, through legal action and other strategies;
• Building the capacity of state Attorney General offices to protect and strengthen foundational education equity;
• Developing, collecting, and disseminating resources to help local stakeholders ensure schools in their communities are safe, supportive, and educate students
• Elevating the voice of educators and ensuring their lived experiences in the classroom is informing solutions; and
• Raising public awareness of the challenges marginalized students experience, and of the potential for legal action.
Unless applicants indicate a preference to contribute to litigation or ECRA exclusively, the DC office will consider each applicant for both the litigation clerkship and the ECRA clerkship. Applicants for the ECRA clerkship must be comfortable with legal research through WestLaw and/or LexisNexis.
Please submit the following application materials to the applicable links below:
Cover letter (including any specific interests in NCYL’s ongoing projects)
Short writing sample
Washington, DC: NCYL anticipates hiring 2-4 fall law clerks, 2-4 spring law clerks and 2-4 summer law clerks for the DC office. Click this link to apply: https://recruiting.paylocity.com/recruiting/jobs/Details/161886/National-Center-For-Youth-Law/Law-Clerk---Washington-DC
NCYL recruits law students throughout the year and reviews applications on a rolling basis. Application deadlines are as follows:
Fall 2019: August 30, 2019
Spring 2020: November 8, 2019
Summer 2020: January 17, 2020
Please note that NCYL does not offer paid clerkships. However, NCYL is committed, subject to available resources, to assist those who require financial assistance in order to accept this position. NCYL encourages students to seek a clinical placement through their school or apply for outside funding to support their work. NCYL routinely works with law schools to secure academic credit for the student.
The National Center for Youth Law is committed to hiring a group of students that reflect the racial and cultural diversity of our clients. Students of color, those who will increase the diversity of NCYL, and those with personal experience in our practice areas are strongly encouraged to apply as a summer clerk.
NCYL is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, age, ethnic background, sex, disability, size, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression, disability, religion, age, personal appearance, size, marital status, family responsibilities, matriculation, or genetic information.