Summer 2019 Legal Internship – ACLU

November 4, 2018
New York, New York
Job Type



For nearly 100 years, the ACLU has been our nation’s guardian of liberty, working in courts, legislatures, and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States. Whether it’s ending mass incarceration, achieving full equality for the LGBT community, advancing racial justice, establishing new privacy protections for our digital age, or preserving the right to vote or the right to have an abortion, the ACLU takes up the toughest civil liberties and civil rights cases and issues to defend all people from government abuse and overreach. With more than one million members, activists, and supporters, the ACLU is a nationwide organization that fights tirelessly in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, D.C., for the principle that every individual’s rights must be protected equally under the law, regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, national origin, and record of arrest or conviction.

The National Security Project of the ACLU’s National Office in New York City seeks applicants for its Summer 2019 Legal Internship. A stipend is available for those students who do not receive outside funding and/or course credit. Arrangements can be made with the student’s school for a work/study stipend or course credit.

The National Security Project is part of the ACLU’s Center for Democracy, which works to strengthen democratic institutions and values, to advocate for government transparency and accountability, and to reinforce the United States’ commitment to human rights and the rule of law. The Center for Democracy includes, in addition to the National Security Project, the Human Rights Program, the Project on Speech, Privacy, and Technology, the Immigrants’ Rights Project, and the Voting Rights Project.

The National Security Project is dedicated to ensuring that U.S. national security policies and practices are consistent with the Constitution, civil liberties, and human rights. Our nation’s core democratic values are the foundation of its strength and security, and the Project works to ensure that our government’s response to national security concerns comports with those values. Through our litigation and advocacy strategies, we respond to specific government measures, and strive to educate the public and shape the law so that the courts, Congress, and citizenry can serve as an enduring check against abuse. The National Security Project’s litigation and advocacy focuses on issues including: government surveillance, targeted killing, unlawful detention, torture, discrimination, censorship, and secrecy.

Interns will have the opportunity to work on all aspects of litigation. The internship is full-time and typically requires a 10 week commitment.

Interns will have the opportunity to gain valuable experience by working alongside the National Security Project team on the following:

  • Conducting legal and policy research
  • Drafting memoranda, affidavits, and briefs
  • Researching prospects for new litigation, including both factual and legal claims
  • Researching and drafting materials for public education
  • Other projects as assigned


This internship is open to law students who will have completed their first semester of school before the internship commences. Interns should possess the following:

  • Excellent research, writing, and communication skills
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite and conducting internet research
  • The initiative to see projects through to completion
  • The ability to analyze complex legal issues
  • A commitment to civil rights and civil liberties issues, particularly as they relate to national security
  • Commitment to the mission of the ACLU


Please send a cover letter describing your interest, including any relevant life or work experience gained before or during law school; a current resume; a short writing sample (no more than 10 pages in length); and a list of three references to

Reference the [NSP Summer 2019 Legal Internship] in the subject line.

The job posting can be viewed here.

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