EBCLC is the largest provider of free legal services to low-income residents of Alameda County, California, and is home to the community-based clinical program for UC Berkeley School of Law during the academic year. During the full-time summer session, EBCLC welcomes students from ALL law schools.
Hiring for the Summer 2023 program is completed. Check back in December 2023 for information on the Summer 2024 program.
EBCLC is a nationally-recognized poverty law clinic founded by Berkeley Law students in 1988 with the dual mission of providing high quality legal services to low-income clients and first-rate clinical education to law students.
As a women of color-led and centered organization, EBCLC takes a women of color centered approach to providing legal services. We believe that if we solve the disparate outcomes that women of color experience in healthcare, housing, education, immigration, debt collection, and the criminal legal system, all people will thrive.
In eight (8) clinics within five broad programs areas, EBCLC staff and students take a multimodal approach to addressing the causes and conditions of poverty and inequality by providing legal education and outreach, brief services, full and holistic representation, and policy advocacy.
What clinics does EBCLC offer?
During the summer, EBCLC offers placements in the following 7 clinics:
- Clean Slate: legal services to help people with criminal records overcome barriers to employment, education, and civic participation.
- Community Economic Justice (CEJ): focused on empowering low-income communities of color to build long-term solutions to poverty through the advancement of community-owned cooperative businesses and affordable housing.
- Consumer Justice: provides assistance and representation to individuals on
a variety of issues, including debt collection defense, student loans, car fraud, predatory lending, and consumer scams.
- Education, Defense and Justice for Youth (EDJY): pushing back against school push-out by providing holistic defense to youth in delinquency proceedings in Alameda County juvenile court, including social work support and education advocacy.
- Health & Welfare: interdisciplinary, holistic approach to address the social conditions known to contribute to poor health outcomes in low-income communities and to improve the health and well-being of individuals living with HIV and other chronic illnesses, children, youth, and families living in poverty.
- Housing: litigation practice designed to protect and promote safe, adequate and affordable housing for low-income tenants.
- Immigration: dedicated to helping immigrants regularize their legal status and assume their rightful place in the community; focus on particularly vulnerable populations: youth, people with disabilities/chronic illness & their families, LGBTQ and individuals in removal proceedings.
Why should I intern at EBCLC?
Gain Hands-on Lawyering Experience: EBCLC offers you the opportunity to put your classroom learning to work and to gain a broad range of experience in the real-life practice of law. With extensive substantive law and skills training, you have primary responsibility for your legal work, including conducting client interviews, counseling clients, negotiating settlements, drafting pleadings, and representing clients in administrative hearings and court proceedings.
Receive Close, High-Quality Supervision: EBCLC summer student applicants apply to work with one clinic and will work under the supervision of one of EBCLC’s clinical supervisors. Supervisors offer day-to-day direction on casework and projects, meet weekly to review your work, and organize regular “case rounds” for all students within a practice group.
Serve the Community: As law student interns, you make a substantial contribution to advancing EBCLC’s racial justice mission by meeting the legal needs of EBCLC’s clients at a time when resources to address these needs are increasingly scarce, often by design.
Build Your Resume: Employers in the private, government and non-profit sectors are looking for students who are “practice-ready,” and they highly value the practical skills and professional responsibility students learn in clinical settings such as EBCLC.
Time Commitment & Location
The Summer 2023 session is nine weeks long (Tuesday, May 30, 2023 to Friday, July 28, 2023). Interns are expected to work 35 hours per week, Monday through Friday. Workloads in any given week may vary due to the nature of a live client practice, but you will not regularly be required to work more hours than anticipated.
EBCLC is a women-of-color centered community-based organization that is deeply committed to equity and inclusion across programs. In light of the ongoing COVID19 public health crisis and in an effort to continue to offer the highest quality of services to our community, our staff continues to work primarily remotely. EBCLC’s physical offices remain open on a limited basis pursuant to strict COVID protocols. We continue to regularly monitor public health guidance and take serious precautions for in-person work. To that end, EBCLC Summer 2023 Interns should expect to have a “hybrid” clinical experience. Some trainings, including orientation on Tuesday, May 30, 2023, will be in-person while others may be remote. The same can be said for the work in clinic as we aim to center the needs of our clients and the communities we serve. Some in-person work may be required.
What qualifications must I have to intern?
As a racial justice organization, EBCLC expects its staff and students to reflect on how structural racism manifests in their work, as well as their own relationship to race and racism.
No specific previous training or coursework is required. However, a demonstrated commitment to serving low-income, minority and underrepresented individuals and groups, and/or previous experience in one of our practice areas or in public interest law is highly desirable, as is second language ability in any of the following: Spanish, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Cambodian, or Farsi.
EBCLC staff will provide any needed support to students working to secure funding through fellowships from law schools and other public interest sources; however, we are unable to offer compensation for summer internship positions.
How do I apply?
EBBCLC is no longer accepting applications for Summer 2023. Please check back in December 2023 for information regarding Summer 2024.
*These instructions are subject to change every year.
Applicants are asked to upload:
- A brief cover letter* in one page or less, resume, and three references (at least one employment-related reference.)
*In your cover letter, please consider addressing one of the questions below:
- Please describe how your lived experiences and professional roles will enable you to help advance EBCLC’s women of color centered approach to providing legal services.
- Please share your thoughts about EBCLC’s expectation that its staff and students engage in analysis around the role of race in their work, and why you want to join EBCLC as a clinical intern?
- A short writing sample (5-10 pages).
You will also be asked to rank your top three clinic preference(s) and whether you would accept a placement in any clinic.
Applications are accepted and hiring decisions made on a rolling basis until positions are filled. Incomplete applications will not be considered. All completed applications will be acknowledged via an automated email.
Please check back in December 2023 for more information on the Summer 2024 program and admissions timeline.