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Legal Careers

Law Student Volunteer, Spring 2025/ Summer 2025/ Fall 2025, Office of Law and Policy

Hiring Organization
National Security Division (NSD)
Hiring Office
Office of Law and Policy
Location:
Washington, DC 20530 - United States
About the Office

The National Security Division's (NSD) Office of Law and Policy, United States Department of Justice, seeks interns for positions located in Washington, D.C. The mission of NSD is to coordinate the Department's efforts in carrying out its top priority of preventing and combating terrorism and protecting the national security. NSD provides legal and policy advice on national security matters, litigates counterterrorism, counterespionage, and foreign intelligence surveillance matters, represents the Government before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and other federal trial and appellate courts, and conducts oversight over Federal Bureau of Investigation national security investigations and foreign intelligence collection. The Office of Law and Policy is responsible for, among other things, resolving novel and complex legal issues relating to national security that arise from the work of the Division and other parts of the Department; providing advice and guidance to Department leadership, the Intelligence Community, and other Executive Branch agencies on matters of national security law and policy; overseeing the development of legislation, guidelines, and other policies in the area of national security; working with foreign governments on a variety of national security issues; and handling appeals that arise in national security cases. The Office works with a variety of other Department components, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Office of Legal Counsel, and the Office of Legal Policy, as well as other departments and agencies, such as the National Security Agency, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Defense, and the Department of State.

As the federal agency whose mission is to ensure the fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans, the Department of Justice is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive work environment. To build and retain a workforce that reflects the diverse experiences and perspectives of the American people, we welcome applicants from the many communities, identities, races, ethnicities, backgrounds, abilities, religions, and cultures of the United States who share our commitment to public service.

Job Description

Intern projects include: researching legal questions, drafting memoranda or other legal and policy analysis, factual research, and assisting with presentations and supporting materials.

Qualifications

Open to all law students. Applicants must be able to obtain and maintain a security clearance. Applicants must be enrolled in an accredited U.S. law school at the time of application and throughout their internship. Strong research and writing skills are required. Prior interest or experience in the area of national security would be useful, but is not required. By the time of the internship, all applicants must have taken one or more of the following courses: Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, or Constitutional Law. Additional courses addressing criminal law and litigation or national security or intelligence law, would also be helpful.

Application Process

Brief cover letter, resume with two references, transcript (official or unofficial), and a writing sample (not to exceed ten pages). Please submit these materials as one pdf, ATTN: Intern Program Coordinator (Office of Law and Policy), via email to office.of.law.and.policy-internship@usdoj.gov. For applications for Spring 2025, the subject line should read: [LAST NAME] - L&P Spring 2025 Internship Application. For applications for Summer 2025, the subject line should read: [LAST NAME] – L&P Summer 2025 Internship application. For applications for Fall 2025, the subject line should read: [LAST NAME] – L&P Fall 2025 Internship application.

Paper or faxed applications will not be considered.

Application Deadlines:

Spring 2025: All Students - August 26, 2024

Summer 2025: For Current 2L Students - October 28, 2024

For Current 1L Students - December 16, 2024 (Please note that we will not consider applications submitted before December 1, 2024)

Fall 2025: All Students - April 21, 2025

Salary

Internships are unpaid. If your school offers interns academic or work study, we will work with you to meet school requirements whenever possible.

Number of Positions
Multiple
Travel
None
Relocation Expenses
No

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Department Policies

Equal Employment Opportunity:  The U.S. Department of Justice is an Equal Opportunity/Reasonable Accommodation Employer.  Except where otherwise provided by law, there will be no discrimination because of race, color, religion, national origin, sex - including gender identity, sexual orientation, or pregnancy status - or because of age (over 40), physical or mental disability, protected genetic information, parental status, marital status, political affiliation, or any other non-merit based factor.  The Department of Justice welcomes and encourages applications from persons with physical and mental disabilities. The Department is firmly committed to satisfying its affirmative obligations under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, to ensure that persons with disabilities have every opportunity to be hired and advanced on the basis of merit within the Department of Justice. For more information, please review our full EEO Statement.

Reasonable Accommodations:  This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the agency.  Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Outreach and Recruitment for Qualified Applicants with Disabilities:  The Department encourages qualified applicants with disabilities, including individuals with targeted/severe disabilities to apply in response to posted vacancy announcements.  Qualified applicants with targeted/severe disabilities may be eligible for direct hire, non-competitive appointment under Schedule A (5 C.F.R. § 213.3102(u)) hiring authority.  Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to contact one of the Department’s Disability Points of Contact (DPOC) to express an interest in being considered for a position. See list of DPOCs.   

Suitability and Citizenship:  It is the policy of the Department to achieve a drug-free workplace and persons selected for employment will be required to pass a drug test which screens for illegal drug use prior to final appointment.  Employment is also contingent upon the completion and satisfactory adjudication of a background investigation. Congress generally prohibits agencies from employing non-citizens within the United States, except for a few narrow exceptions as set forth in the annual Appropriations Act (see, https://www.usajobs.gov/Help/working-in-government/non-citizens/). Pursuant to DOJ component policies, only U.S. citizens are eligible for employment with the Executive Office for Immigration Review, U.S. Trustee’s Offices, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Unless otherwise indicated in a particular job advertisement, qualifying non-U.S. citizens meeting immigration and appropriations law criteria may apply for employment with other DOJ organizations. However, please be advised that the appointment of non-U.S. citizens is extremely rare; such appointments would be possible only if necessary to accomplish the Department's mission and would be subject to strict security requirements. Applicants who hold dual citizenship in the U.S. and another country will be considered on a case-by-case basis. All DOJ employees are subject to a residency requirement. Candidates must have lived in the United States for at least three of the past five years. The three-year period is cumulative, not necessarily consecutive. Federal or military employees, or dependents of federal or military employees serving overseas, are excepted from this requirement. This is a Department security requirement which is waived only for extreme circumstances and handled on a case-by-case basis.

Veterans:  There is no formal rating system for applying veterans' preference to attorney appointments in the excepted service; however, the Department of Justice considers veterans' preference eligibility as a positive factor in attorney hiring. Applicants eligible for veterans' preference must include that information in their cover letter or resume and attach supporting documentation (e.g., the DD 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty and other supporting documentation) to their submissions. Although the "point" system is not used, per se, applicants eligible to claim 10-point preference must submit Standard Form (SF) 15, Application for 10-Point Veteran Preference, and submit the supporting documentation required for the specific type of preference claimed (visit the OPM website, www.opm.gov/forms/pdf_fill/SF15.pdf for a copy of SF 15, which lists the types of 10-point preferences and the required supporting document(s). Applicants should note that SF 15 requires supporting documentation associated with service- connected disabilities or receipt of nonservice-connected disability pensions to be dated 1991 or later except in the case of service members submitting official statements or retirement orders from a branch of the Armed Forces showing that their retirement was due to a permanent service-connected disability or that they were transferred to the permanent disability retired list (the statement or retirement orders must indicate that the disability is 10% or more).

USAO Residency Requirement:  Assistant United States Attorneys must reside in the district to which appointed or within 25 miles thereof.  See 28 U.S.C. 545 for district specific information.

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This and other vacancy announcements can be found under Attorney Vacancies and Volunteer Legal Internships. The Department of Justice cannot control further dissemination and/or posting of information contained in this vacancy announcement. Such posting and/or dissemination is not an endorsement by the Department of the organization or group disseminating and/or posting the information.

Updated May 15, 2024