Fellowships

AmeriCorps | Fellowships |

AmeriCorps

Make a difference by becoming a member of AmeriCorps and being placed at Greater Boston Legal Services (GBLS)

There are 5 AmeriCorps Opportunities available for lawyers, law students or aspiring law students to begin in September 2021

GBLS is the primary provider of free, non-criminal legal assistance in the Greater Boston area, assisting low-income individuals, families, and community-based organizations with a wide range of poverty law matters. Our staff work in the following specialized units to best address the problems faced by the people in our service area living in poverty: Asian Outreach, Elder, Health and Disability, Employment, Family, Consumer Rights, Housing, Immigration, Welfare, the Mass. Medicare Advocacy Project and Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) & Re-entry Project. In addition, our Cambridge and Somerville Legal Services Office (CASLS) offers legal assistance in a number of these areas to residents of Cambridge, Somerville and surrounding towns. Placements are available in the Consumer Rights Unit, Welfare Unit, Housing Unit, Employment Unit and Cambridge and Somerville Office.  

AmeriCorps members will serve as legal assistants under the direct supervision of an experienced GBLS legal professional, many of whom are considered national experts in their respective areas of poverty law. Their responsibilities may involve provision of advice, referrals, brief service, and direct representation of clients at administrative hearings; participation in community education and outreach activities, as well as other related work. If attorney, the AmeriCorps would primarily handle their own caseload.

Terms/Benefits: Members making a one year service commitment, and who complete their 1,700 hour service commitment will receive: $26,000 taxable yearly living allowance (paid bi-weekly); a $6,195 education award (payable on completion of the service term); health insurance; day care assistance, if eligible; hands-on supervised exposure to the practice of law and the ability to place eligible student loans in forbearance with interest paid upon completion of service.

Eligibility/Qualifications: Members must be at least 17 years of age, be a U.S. citizen, a U.S. national, or a lawful permanent resident alien of the U.S. In addition, candidates must be college graduates with an interest in attending law school, attending law school at night, or a law school graduate with an interest in public service law. Proficiency in a non-English language desirable. Education Requirement: Bachelor’s Degree, JD’s encouraged to apply. Training will be provided.
    
Sponsorship: The AmeriCorps placements at GBLS are part of the Legal Assistance for Self-Sufficiency Program, run under the auspices of the South Coastal Counties Legal Services, Inc. The program is funded through the Corporation for National Community and Service, and administered through the Massachusetts Service Alliance. 

Interested individuals must complete and submit an application online at https://www.ala-mass.org/how-to-apply. 

GBLS is an AA/EO/accessible employer committed to diversity in the workforce and regards differences as assets.

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Fellowships

Greater Boston Legal Services, Inc. (GBLS) will sponsor a limited number of applicants for two national fellowship programs: Equal Justice Works and the Skadden Fellowship Program. Both programs require applicants to develop a proposed project with a sponsoring legal agency. Selections for the fellowships are made by the national programs and not by GBLS. Because of the time needed to research and develop high quality projects, interested persons should contact GBLS as soon as possible. Earlier applicants will have an advantage.

GBLS’ mission is to provide free civil legal aid to help vulnerable community members achieve justice and meet their basic needs. GBLS helps families and individuals retain affordable housing, secure admission to emergency shelter, gain protection from domestic violence, access subsistence income for food and medical care, and recover earned wages, among other needs.   
  
GBLS operates under a theory of change model that makes the following assumptions: 1) free civil legal aid is critical to improving the lives of low-income families and individuals; 2) systemic barriers to justice perpetuate poverty; 3) access to an attorney empowers underserved populations to assert their rights; and 4) systems that have historically kept people in poverty can be mitigated by resolving individual civil cases that challenge unfair rules, policies, and procedures more broadly. 

GBLS is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Accessible Employer and strives to ensure that our staff members reflect the diversity of the communities we serve. 

Equal Justice Works Fellowship Program

The goals of the Equal Justice Works Fellowship Program are to serve under represented communities; create new public interest law positions; select a diverse group of highly qualified fellows; and develop future leaders in public interest law. 
 
Term: Salary provided for two full years, loan repayment assistance, national training programs; fringe benefits to be paid by GBLS. 
 
Eligibility: Must have graduated from an Equal Justice Works Member Law School before September 2022 with a J.D. or LL.M. Experienced attorneys who are committed to public interest law are encouraged to apply.   
 
Application procedure: In addition to submitting an application and other related information, applicants should develop, in conjunction with GBLS, a new project to benefit under represented communities. Applications must be submitted online through the Equal Justice Works website at www.equaljusticeworks.org. Hard copies or email copies of the application will not be accepted.  

Application and Selection Timetable:

Application opens online: June 15, 2021
GBLS deadline: July 30, 2021
EJW Application deadline: September 20, 2021
Interviews Begin for Selected Candidates: December 2021
Interviews continued; fellowships are offered on a rolling basis: December 2021 - April 2022
Fellows commence work: September 2022

Interested individuals must submit a cover letter and resume to the Personnel Team at jobs@gbls.org with the subject line “Fellowship Opportunities”. Please include in your cover letter a proposed project and indicate unit of interest. GBLS encourages applicants from a broad range of backgrounds and experiences. 
 
For more information on the EJW Fellowship Program, please go to www.equaljusticeworks.org.   
 

Skadden Fellowship Program

The goal of the Skadden Fellowship Program is to provide support to 2022 law school graduates and outgoing judicial law clerks who want to work at an organization that provides civil legal services to the poor, including the homeless, the elderly, the disabled, or those deprived of their civil or human rights. 
 
Terms: Salary and fringe benefits provided for two full years. 
  
Eligibility: 2022 law school graduates or outgoing law clerks who are not receiving any other fellowship or prize monies for the Skadden Fellowship duration are eligible. The grant-making panel will consider the worthiness of the proposed project’s goals as well as the applicant’s competency, character, and commitment. 
 
Application procedure: Applicants should email an application, a proposed project, and additional information in conjunction with GBLS, the sponsoring organization to skadden.foundation@skadden.com. The application can be downloaded at www.skaddenfellowships.org. 

Application and Selection Timetable:

GBLS deadline:     July 30, 2021
Application deadline:  September 10, 2021
Finalists notified: November 11, 2021
Fellows commence work: September 2022

Interested individuals must submit a cover letter and resume to the Personnel Department by email at jobs@gbls.org with the subject line “Fellowship Opportunities”. Please include in your cover letter a proposed project and indicate unit of interest. GBLS encourages applicants from a broad range of backgrounds and experiences. 
 
For more information on the Skadden Fellowship Program, please go to www.skaddenfellowships.org

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