Public Interest Law Fellowship
Through the Public Interest Law Fellowship, a Cardinal Quarter opportunity, students have the opportunity to spend a quarter working full time in the field of public interest law with a supervisor/mentor in a community organization of their choice. Fellows must work in the United States.
Approximately six fellows will be selected as Public Interest Law fellows to spend a quarter working in public interest (nonprofit or governmental) organizations within the United States addressing a number of social issues. Three Public Interest Law fellows will be designated as Liman Fellows. The Liman Summer Fellowship is coordinated by the Arthur Liman Public Interest Program at Yale Law School, and offers students an opportunity to participate in public interest law projects. Liman Fellows have worked on issues such as immigrants’ rights, workers’ rights, prison conditions, educational adequacy, and juvenile justice. Liman Fellows are required to attend the annual Liman Public Interest Colloquium (expenses paid), and will be incorporated into a cohort of fellows from Barnard, Brown, Bryn Mawr, Harvard, Princeton, Spelman, and Yale. The Liman Colloquium is hosted by Yale Law School.
Applicants propose their own placements with organizations with which they have corresponded before the application deadline and effectively demonstrate that their intended partner organizations have the need, interest and capacity to work with a fellow and to support the proposed project/work plans. The Haas Center has many Resources for Fellowship Applicants, including our list of Cardinal Quarter Connections of host organizations seeking to work with Stanford undergraduate students, and our Meet the Undergraduate Fellows page with information on previous fellows' community partners and projects.
Please review the program policies in their entirety before applying.
Each Public Interest Law fellow receives a base stipend of $5,500 to cover most of the essential costs associated with an unpaid service experience. Financial aid and supplemental funding are available to students who qualify.
Visit this page for information on previous fellows' community partners and projects.
This fellowship is made possible by Haas Center donors as part of the Cardinal Quarter program.
For complete eligibility requirements, please review our program policies in their entirety.
Students must be enrolled in undergraduate study for both winter and spring quarters, and must be in good academic standing. Students may not participate in the program or receive or retain fellowship funds if they are on suspension.
Undergraduates from all academic disciplines are encouraged to apply, and applicants may vary in academic interests, public service involvement, and experience. Priority will be given to students who have completed fewer than two previous Cardinal Quarter opportunities. Graduating seniors may have lower priority. Students who have begun their coterm programs are not eligible to apply.
Students are welcome to propose placements with a variety of public interest organizations, keeping in mind funding will be restricted for certain types of political, research, Stanford-based, for-profit, and faith-based organizations. Please review the “Host Organization Eligibility” section of our program policies for more information.
Selected fellows are expected to begin service following the completion of spring quarter classes and no later than July 5, 2022. All fellows are required to work with their community partners at least 35 hours/week for nine consecutive weeks. Fellows are expected to work on-site at their host organizations (University policies and health conditions permitting), but some hybrid or fully virtual experiences may be allowed on a case-by-case basis. Fellows must have a designated full-time professional staff member on-site as their supervisor/mentor. Please review the complete program policies for additional requirements. Other commitments include the following:
- Complete an online program orientation.
- Complete the Engaging in Ethical and Effective Service workshop or worksheet.
- Meet with your academic mentor at least once.
- Design a personal learning plan and share the learning plan with the site supervisor and academic mentor.
- Submit a brief preliminary report.
- Submit a final report, complete a program evaluation, and correspond with fellowship donor(s) as requested by fellowships program staff.
- Meet with your academic mentor at least once.
- Attend a de-briefing meeting for the purpose of reflecting upon and evaluating fellowship experiences.
- Participate in outreach activities to share the experience and help publicize the program.