Public Interest Fellowships
UGA Law offers multiple summer public interest and governmental opportunities:
These fellowships share common criteria. See the end of this file for more particular descriptions of each fellowship, including the number and the amounts of the fellowship awarded.
The Georgia Public Interest Law Fellowships use a single application process. You need only submit one application through Symplicity, as described below. After the deadline, your application will be distributed to each of the committees making fellowship decisions.
In general, a Georgia Public Interest Law Fellowship may be awarded to a rising second- or third-year student who will work in an uncompensated public interest legal position.
“Public interest” work means the use of law by nonprofit organizations, law firms, and governments to represent historically underrepresented people or groups or to advocate on behalf of causes and concerns with a broad impact on the public. Areas of public interest law include, but are not limited to, human and civil rights and liberties, women’s rights, children and youth services, immigrant issues, worker rights employment law, consumer rights, public benefits, gender and sexual minority rights, environmental law, prisoner rights, criminal law, and the death penalty. Public interest work includes domestic and international activities, and encompasses individual and group representation, representation of governments, and policy advocacy. See www.equaljusticeworks.org.
A record number of School of Law students spent a summer of service in Georgia; Washington D.C.; New York City and abroad in 2018.
To apply, Go to Simplicity, https://law-uga-csm.symplicity.com/students/ to search for job posting: #14705
- One file containing your curriculum vitae/resume (uploaded into Symplicity as a ‘resume’)
- One file containing, in this order (uploaded as a ‘cover letter’ in Symplicity):
- The application cover sheet;
- Answers to the short-answer questions; and
- An offer letter or email from your sponsoring agency.
- One file containing any letter of reference you choose to submit, confidentially submitted to: Sarah Quinn (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Deadlines and Dates of Decision
April 13th for all applications.
May 11th for the decisions to be finalized.
Responsibilities of Recipients
Fellowship recipients must:
work at least 320 hours (8 weeks, full time work) over the summer at the proposed public interest employer; and
submit a Fellowship Report to the contact person for the relevant selection committee no later than September 1 of the year in which the award was given. The report should include a discussion of how the student’s experience affected their commitment to public interest work and his or her development as a lawyer.
If possible, submit photographs that we might use in our efforts to secure more funding for the fellowships.
Eligibility & Requirements: The Edward Spurgeon Fellowships use the criteria stated for all Georgia Law Public Interest Fellowships.
- representing a city or county in civil matters in the office of an attorney representing a Georgia city or county as the city or county attorney.
- representing the Georgia Municipal Association in matters involving cities or consolidated governments.
Number of Fellowships: Depending on available funds
Amount & Term: $500-$3,000 depending on available funds.
Contact Person: Tony Waller (email@example.com)
Description: This funding is thanks to the generous donations of UGA Law alumni, including those working in government, non-profit, and public interest fields. This funding is in place to replace The Equal Justice Foundation and other funding for this year.
The Equal Justice Foundatoin is a student-run organization devoted to the promotion of public interest law. EJF works to provide stipends for Georgia law students who have chosen to work in unpaid, public interest positions over the summer. Public interest law is not a lucrative field, and students who pay the high cost of legal education need financial support. EJF’s mission is to:
Raise money for stipends and distribute the funds to public interest law students in a fair manner,
Provide networking opportunities for students interested in public interest law careers, and
Promote the viability of public interest law careers at UGA by our fundraising efforts and supporting other public interest organizations at the University of Georgia School of Law.
Eligibility & Requirements: The Equal Justice Foundation Fellowships use the criteria stated for all Georgia Law Public Interest Fellowships.
More than 65% of Georgians live in rural areas, but the vast majority of lawyers live and practice in metro-Atlanta. Six counties in Georgia have no lawyers, and 56 counties have fewer than fifteen, causing the judiciary and bar to declare this justice gap a crisis for our state’s legal system. With so few lawyers practicing in rural areas, access to justice is more difficult for those who live outside of metropolitan areas. In addition, transportation challenges and lack of access to high speed internet make access to legal help particularly difficult for our rural residents.
UGA Law seeks to expand access to justice in rural areas of Georgia through the establishment of a Rural Justice Fellowship. This fellowship will fund a law student to work in a private law firm in a rural part of the state, learn about rural practice, and undertake one pro bono matter for a low income client in connection with the Georgia Legal Services Program office serving that part of the state.
The selected fellow will receive a $5000 stipend for the summer.
What does it take to be a Rural Justice Fellow?
- A commitment and interest in small town rural law practice
- A host law firm in a rural part of Georgia willing to take on a summer Rural Justice Fellow
- A willingness to help provide service in one pro bono case with support from the Georgia Legal Services Program
- Approval to work under the Bar’s Student Practice Act
Professor Milner S. Ball, a University of Georgia School of Law graduate, taught at the law school for nearly thirty years. He retired as the holder of the Caldwell Chair in 2007 and passed away in 2011.
Bertis Downs captured Milner’s spirit eloquently by writing that Milner was a “comforter to the powerless” and “champion of the poor.” Many, including Bertis, were inspired by Milner’s firm belief in the “necessity of community willing to do the hard work.”
The Milner S. Ball Fellowships allows the law school to have a lasting tribute to the memory of Professor Ball. The fund financially support law students in good standing seeking public interest/pro bono service opportunities during their first and second summers in law school.
What does it take to be a Milner S. Ball Fellow?
- A commitment to use the law to help those less fortunate;
- The ability to see the potential of law as tool for social justice;
- Demonstration of a service mindset and willingness to “walk the talk”
- A host agency willing to house you for the summer that fits within Milner S. Ball’s values;
- Approval to work under the bar’s Student Practice Act.