2013-14 Academic Year Opportunities
The Oregon Justice Resource Center is offering 4 distinct opportunities for rising 2Ls and 3Ls/4Es to work on:
- Indigent Defense (Indigent Defense Project),
- Capital Cases (Eighth Amendment Project),
- Immigration Law (Immigrant Rights Project), or
- Police Accountability (Police Accountability Project).
The OJRC will accept applications for all positions starting June 24th and until July 8th, 2013, 5PM PST.
Application: please send as a single pdf attachment your (i) resume, (ii) 1pg cover letter briefly explaining your background and interest in working with OJRC, (ii) 5-10pg writing sample, and (iv) contact information for two references to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include in the subject line your full name and the position(s) you are applying for (you may apply to more than one position with the same application).
*All students must be available to meet weekly with OJRC staff and attend a skills class, which will be offered every other week on Friday afternoons (3-5PM) during the 2013-14 academic year*
**Externship opportunities are only available to students who have worked with the OJRC for at least one academic semester.**
The Oregon Justice Resource Center is offering the following opportunities for upper division students starting Fall 2013.
1. EIGHTH AMENDMENT PROJECT (formerly Death Penalty Project): Working under the direct supervision of the Project Director, the EAP Intern/Clerk will begin to learn the skills required to defend those facing capital punishment. Working with experienced capital practitioners, the law intern/clerk will research and draft pleadings addressing the legal claims in courts ranging from the state courts to the federal courts. Interns/Clerks will work on capital cases primarily on direct appeal and in post-conviction. The OJRC may take on such work as writing amicus curiae briefs, clemency petitions, petitions for writs of certiorari, and pretrial motions in capital cases.
Interns/Clerks will receive training in post-conviction law and investigation techniques; examine national legal doctrine governing the selection of cases to be tried capitally and the imposition of the death penalty; and meet with capital defense practitioners with a variety of expertise. Additionally, the intern/clerk will assist the OJRC staff with various research projects relating to the death penalty in Oregon.
Interns/Clerks serve an important role by reviewing trial records and case law, and by preparing memos, motions, briefs, and summaries. These activities challenge the intern to hone their skills at problem solving, legal analysis, legal research, fact investigation, oral and written communication, client interviewing and counseling, and efficient management of practice. Interns will gain the skills necessary to provide zealous, professional, and high quality representation.
- 2 Positions (pro-bono): Strong preference for those students who will take the “Capital Punishment Seminar” in Fall 2013 or similar. This position requires a commitment for the entire academic year (September 2013 – May 2014). You must be able to work 15 hours a week and be available to meet downtown, weekly, from 4-5PM on Weds (subject to change).
2. IMMIGRANT RIGHTS PROJECT: 2L and 3L students are eligible to apply for internship/clerkship position with the Oregon Justice Resource Center and work, pro bono, as an Immigrant Rights Project Law Intern/Clerk.
Working with the Immigration Program Manager of Sponsors Organized to Assist Refugees Immigration Legal Services (SOAR Legal), students will learn the skills required to provide competent representation to refugees and low-income immigrants. Students will assist with applications for legal permanent residency (greencards), family reunification, naturalization and deferred action for childhood arrivals. Under the supervision of SOAR Legal’s Immigration Program Manager and the Oregon Justice Resource Center, students will assist with all aspects of case preparation, including fact investigation, developing case strategies, preparing applications for immigration benefits, legal research, and writing internal memoranda.
- 2 Positions (pro-bono): This section of the Immigrant Rights Project requires students to work for 15 hours a week. This includes working 8 hours a week at the SOAR Legal office and meeting with OJRC staff every week, time and place TBD. This position requires a commitment for the entire academic year (September 2013 – May 2014). Prerequisite/co-requisite: Immigration Law.
3. INDIGENT DEFENSE PROJECT: Working hand in hand with the Training Director of Metropolitan Public Defender (MPD), law school students will learn the knowledge and skills required to handle a criminal case. Students in the Indigent Defense Project will be directly supervised and mentored by the Training Director for MPD and will also work closely with the chief attorney of the section to which the student is assigned. Depending on their year in school, students will work on a full range of projects from motions and memoranda to trial preparation and direct client representation.
The Indigent Defense Project will assist the public defender’s office, working to ensure that each criminal defendant is provided with zealous advocacy and quality representation. The goal of the Indigent Defense Project is to promote the improvement in the administration of justice by striving to make sure that each indigent criminal defendant is represented professionally and with dignity.
The Indigent Defense Project is an opportunity for students work on real criminal cases and participate in the development of cases in real time. Students will explore the complexities of the criminal justice system by working in all areas of criminal defense practice
- 4 Positions (pro-bono): This position requires a commitment for the entire academic year (September 2013 – May 2014) and 15 hours a week and you must be available to work at least two half days at the Portland MPD office. Recommended courses: Criminal Law I; Criminal Procedure II; Criminal Law and Psychology.
4. POLICE ACCOUNTABILITY PROJECT: The Police Accountability Project works to improve police oversight in Portland, Oregon by advocating for individuals who have filed police misconduct complaints with the Independent Police Review Division and through research and public advocacy on police reform.
Working under the direct supervision of board members of the Portland Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild (NLG) and the OJRC, law school students in the Police Accountability Project will learn client-centered advocacy skills, gain knowledge of the police oversight system in Portland, Oregon, and have the opportunity to support community-based police reform efforts. Students will interview individuals who seek to file police misconduct complaints, draft complaints, and communicate with complainants throughout the process. Students will also assist complainants in appeals of police misconduct complaint findings before the Citizen Review Committee, which entails preparing for and speaking at public appeals hearings. The Police Accountability Project may also involve research on police reform efforts and public advocacy on reform issues, including drafting letters to City Council, and possibly public testimony.
The Police Accountability Project requires students to meet with OJRC staff weekly and NLG supervisors every other week over the course of a year. During this time, students will receive guidance on client interviewing skills, access to justice issues, and other aspects of client-centered advocacy, and will learn the procedures and guidelines that apply to the Portland Independent Police Review Division, the Portland Police Bureau, and the Citizen Review Committee.
- 2 Positions (Pro bono): 2L and 3L students who have completed a course in legal ethics are eligible to apply for a clerkship position with the Oregon Justice Resource Center and work pro bono as a Police Accountability Project Law Clerk. This position requires a commitment for the entire academic year (Fall/Spring) and 10 hours per week, including time in the evenings. Most CRC appeal hearings are held on Wednesday evenings. Preference will be given to those students who students who have experience working in diverse socioeconomic and cultural environments.
Generally: We will accept applications for all positions starting June 24th and until July 8th, 2013, 5PM PST. Please send as a single pdf attachment your (i) resume, (ii) 1pg cover letter briefly explaining your background and interest in working with OJRC, (iii) 5-10pg writing sample, and (iv) contact information for two references to email@example.com
For further information about the OJRC please see our website: http://ojrc.org/ and Facebook page http://on.fb.me/hPhYq7)
S. Bobbin Singh, Executive Director
Erin McKee, Deputy Executive Director
Questions? Please contact Bobbin Singh, Executive Director, as Singh@ojrc.org or Erin McKee, Deputy Executive Director, at McKee@ojrc.org