The American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland (ACLU-MD) seeks highly motivated law students for internships. The ACLU-MD is the Maryland state affiliate office of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), one of the nation's premier civil liberties and civil rights organizations.
Founded in 1920, the ACLU has staffed offices in every state, and over 400,000 members and supporters who sustain the organization through annual dues and donations. As the first public interest law firm of its kind, the ACLU has been intimately involved in the vast majority of the civil rights and civil liberties struggles since its creation, and has contributed to the great expansion of rights and liberties that we take for granted today.
The Maryland ACLU was founded in 1931, and currently has approximately 14,000 members statewide. Our mission is to ensure that all people in the State are free to think and speak as they choose and can lead their lives free from discrimination and unwarranted government intrusion. We are guided in our work by the Bill of Rights and the Maryland Declaration of Rights, and act without partisanship to achieve these goals.
Like its national counterpart, the ACLU-MD engages in constitutional and civil rights litigation, legislative analysis and lobbying, and public education on a wide range of issues. With a staff of 21 full-time employees, including eight attorneys, the Maryland affiliate is the largest of the ACLU offices from comparably sized states. Cases are litigated by full-time staff counsel, working with volunteer cooperating attorneys throughout the state and District of Columbia.
The Maryland ACLU takes great pride in having an extraordinarily broad agenda among ACLU affiliates. Beyond the defense of First Amendment rights for which the ACLU is best known, our affiliate has taken on major initiatives on behalf of marginalized citizens -- those who are racially, politically and economically disadvantaged.
Currently, the ACLU-MD is pursuing precedent-setting litigation defending the right to photograph and videotape police activity, protecting free speech in public places, and challenging police misconduct and racial profiling. In addition, the ACLU-MD's current or recent docket is comprised of cases in almost every area of constitutional and civil rights law, including freedom of speech and association, freedom of religion, race and gender discrimination, privacy, police misconduct, the right to vote, due process, lesbian and gay rights, prisoner's rights, the rights of persons with disabilities, criminal procedure, and access to public records.
Interns participate in all aspects of the ACLU's legal program. Depending on their interests and the organization's needs, they may be assigned to a particular case (such as the housing desegregation case or the education reform department), or may be asked to assist volunteer or staff counsel working on potential or pending litigation. Interns can expect to conduct legal and factual research, interview potential plaintiffs and witnesses draft correspondence and legal memos, and, where possible, draft briefs or motions in pending cases. Whatever the task, interns gain valuable skills and experience, and an appreciation for the practice of public interest law.
Applicants should have excellent research and writing skills, a demonstrated commitment to public interest work, and a healthy sense of humor. They should also be comfortable working with clients from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds with a wide range of needs.
Interested students should send a cover letter, resume, legal writing sample, official or unofficial transcript, and the name of at least two references to:
Legal Program Administrator
ACLU of Maryland
3600 Clipper Mill Road, Suite 350
Baltimore, MD 21211
(410) 889-8550, x 125
(410) 366-7838 (FAX)
Applications will be evaluated on a rolling basis until all positions are filled, but students should apply early to ensure consideration. Students who have completed their first year of law school will be considered, but preference will be given to students who have completed their second year, or who have taken constitutional law. Fall and spring interns are expected to work at least eight hours per week for ten weeks. The ACLU-MD has no funding for legal interns, but can assist students in applying for grants from other sources.
The ACLU of Maryland is an equal opportunity employer, and is committed to a policy of equal treatment and opportunity without regard to age, color, disability, gender, marital or parental status, national origin, race, religion, or sexual orientation.