About the Fellowships
Immigrant Justice Corps annually awards two-year Fellowships to recent law graduates and recent college graduates from around the country – individuals with tremendous talent, promise and a demonstrated commitment to providing legal services for low income people and for immigrants.
IJC’s goal is to recruit, train, and populate the immigration field with high quality advocates and lawyers. As the next generation of lawyers and advocates, IJC Fellows remove barriers to justice and economic opportunity for immigrants pursuing the American Dream.
IJC trains fellows and places them with host organizations across nine states and 26 cities including in New York City, Long Island, the Lower Hudson Valley, Upstate New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Texas, Florida, Virginia, California, Nevada and Maryland.
IJC seeks Fellows who are smart, compassionate, and passionate about justice for immigrants.
IJC also seeks Fellows dedicated to the idea of a Fellowship program – you give us two years of hard work and we will make sure you will be immersed in immigration law and helping others who likely would not have had an attorney or advocate otherwise. Almost all IJC Fellows speak a language in addition to English.
The ability to speak another language other than English is preferable but not required. The language that is in highest demand by host organizations is Spanish. We also have Fellows who speak Mandarin, Haitian Creole, French, Arabic, Korean, and Urdu among many others.
IJC’s partnering host organizations practice a wide variety of immigration law, serve different ethnic communities, and/or work in different geographic areas. While the everyday work environment is different for each Fellow, all Fellows are a part of IJC’s team and together are provided:
Monthly training and professional development opportunities including some free CLE credit courses for Justice Fellows
Access to an immense network of professional immigration legal service providers—both organizations and individuals
Career planning assistance
Partnership with a large community of peers
Invitations to IJC sponsored social and professional events
Upon completion of the program, membership to IJC’s Alumni group
A team of committed lawyers and professionals who want to help you succeed
Am I an employee of IJC or of the host organization?
Most Justice Fellows become employees of their host organization and receive benefits and supervision through their host. IJC guarantees a minimum salary ($56,000 for Justice Fellows), health insurance coverage, and at least three weeks’ paid time off for Fellows, but beyond that benefits packages, work environment, and even salary, vary greatly from one organization to another.
Roughly half of IJC’s Community Fellows are “out-placed” Fellows, similar to Justice Fellows, and become employees of their host organizations. The other half of Community Fellows work directly for IJC and receive benefits and supervision through IJC. First year Community Fellows earn $43,000 each year and second year Community Fellows earn $45,000.
While most IJC Fellows are not directly employed by IJC, each Fellow is a member of the IJC team, which consists of a consortium of contemporary social justice advocates focused on providing desperately needed legal services to vulnerable immigrant populations.
Will I have an opportunity to work with IJC outside of my host organization?
Yes! IJC hosts monthly trainings for all Fellows, in addition to clinics, social gatherings, and professional events for Fellows.
A primary purpose of IJC is to expand access to counsel. Therefore, if there is an emerging critical legal need, we may mobilize Fellows to respond.
Will Immigrant Justice Corps sponsor me for a green card or skilled worker visa?
No. All fellows must be eligible for work authorization in the U.S. for the full two years of the fellowship.
May DACA recipients apply?
Yes. DACA recipients are welcome to apply to Immigrant Justice Corps, and comprise a significant percentage of our fellowship classes.
If chosen, may I defer?
No. Fellows who are selected must be ready to start the program in September.
May LLMs apply for the Justice Fellowship?
Yes, LLM graduates may apply if they have sat/will sit for the state bar in which the host is located before the fellowship begins.
Do all Justice Fellows have to take the Bar?
Generally, yes. While immigration lawyers may practice in jurisdictions where they are not admitted, we generally require IJC Fellows to take the state bar in which the host is located to comply with host organizations Student Practice Orders and also to enable them to appear in state court proceedings to represent clients in ancillary family or criminal court proceedings. However, there may be some flexibility to this rule.