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Undergraduate Student Volunteer Program

About Our Office

The United States Attorney’s Office offers student interns a unique and rewarding opportunities to work on some of the most significant and visible cases being litigated.  Interns get to work with Assistant U.S. Attorneys, paralegals, and other staff members. Internships are offered throughout the year in our Boston office and are typically available in our Civil and Criminal Divisions.

Our office places a high value on diversity of experiences and perspectives and encourages applications from all qualified individuals from all ethnic and racial backgrounds, veterans, LGBT individuals, and persons with disabilities.

Job Description

Typical assignments for undergraduate students involve working directly with Assistant U.S. Attorneys, paralegals, agents and/or others law enforcement personnel; assisting in document management by drafting, proofreading, redacting, scanning, and copying; providing a range of support in preparation for court proceedings; aiding in the gathering and production of documents during discovery; updating and organizing legal files, including creating investigative binders; compiling data into an Excel spreadsheets; conducting internet searches of public records; summarizing reports and depositions; transcribing audio and video recordings; supporting trial teams by organizing evidence and trial exhibits; sitting in on witness interviews, moot opening statements and closing arguments; and assisting with case openings and closings.


To be considered for this program, candidates must be U.S. citizens enrolled in an accredited undergraduate college or university. The ideal candidate is able to work well independently and as part of a team; multitasker; creative and proactive; and capable of handling sensitive and confidential matters appropriately. Candidates will be subject to a background investigation due to the sensitive nature of the work performed by the office and must be favorably adjudicated.

Summer Program

The Summer internship program requires a minimum of 35-40 hours per week, for a total of 10 weeks. The summer internship program runs from early June until late August; however, we are flexible on start and end dates permitting they adhere to this timeline. The summer program is a combination of in-person and remote work.


Undergraduate student volunteers are uncompensated but may receive course credit per school policies.

Spring and Fall Program

During the Spring and Fall internship programs, we offer part-time and full-time internships with a minimum commitment of 20 hours per week, for a total of 4 months. Students wishing to participate in the spring or fall internship program will primarily work in-person with a remote work opportunity.  The spring program runs from mid-January to early-June. The fall program runs from mid-July to early-December.

Application Process and Deadlines

Cover letter, resumes, dates when available, and telephone number or email address where student can be reached. Email application with a subject line that reads “Undergrad” along with application materials listed above to:

Applications for the fall semester must be received by April 15th.
Applications for the spring semester must be received by September 1st.
Applications for the summer must be received by January 15th. 

Department Policies

COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement

To ensure compliance with an applicable preliminary nationwide injunction, which may be supplemented, modified, or vacated, depending on the course of ongoing litigation, the Federal Government will take no action to implement or enforce the COVID-19 vaccination requirement pursuant to Executive Order 14043 on Requiring Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccination for Federal Employees. Therefore, to the extent a Federal job announcement includes the requirement that applicants must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 pursuant to Executive Order 14043, that requirement does not currently apply. Federal agencies may request information regarding the vaccination status of selected applicants for the purposes of implementing other workplace safety protocols, such as protocols related to masking, physical distancing, testing, travel, and quarantine.

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 Accommodation

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, 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.


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, 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 his or her retirement was due to a permanent service-connected disability or that he/she was transferred to the permanent disability retired list (the statement or retirement orders must indicate that the disability is 10% or more).

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 March 7, 2024