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Open positions at the National Immigrant Justice Center:

Development Associate

Paralegal, Immigrant Children's Protection Project

Reception Area Scheduler

Staff Attorney, Immigrant Children's Protection Project

Internships

Fellowships


Development Associate

The Development Associate will report to the Associate Director of Resource Development and be tasked with three areas of responsibility: 1. leading logistical support for NIJC’s fundraising and cultivation events; 2. supporting individual giving campaigns; and 3. assisting in the organization’s grants process, from drafting proposals to preparing grant reports, in an effort to increase public and private foundation support. The successful candidate must be a team player; work well in a fast-paced environment; exercise good judgment; maintain confidentiality as necessary;  and manage multiple priorities in a deadline-driven environment. Duties include, but will not be limited to the following:

  • Plan, design and produce events (minimum of four), including scheduling, invitation coordination, logistics, staffing, and post-event follow-up, tracking, and reports.
  • Develop materials for potential funders and current funders demonstrating NIJC’s impact and response to emerging environment.
  • Collaborate with the Associate Director of Resource Development and Executive Director to develop strategies, foster relationships, implement activities, and analyze performance of events and individual campaigns to maximize financial return.
  • Support the development of grant applications, including writing, editing and collecting information from staff and publicly available data sources.
  • Maintain an electronic grant calendar and track requests, reports, and renewal submissions.
  • Work collaboratively with Project Directors to identify and research government, public, and private funding opportunities to support existing and future programs/projects.
  • Identify and cultivate relationships with new and existing donors and prospects.
  • Collaborate with the Communications team on the design and development of donor marketing materials and strategies for growing the organization’s overall on-line fundraising capability.
  • Perform administrative duties including: maintaining the organization’s development-related databases (i.e. ensuring information is accurate and current, processing donations and entering gifts into donor database); managing the donor acknowledgement process (including drafting acknowledgement letters); and tracking expenses and reimbursement requests.
  • Maintain a thorough understanding of the organization’s services, goals, mission and strategic direction.

Mandatory Job Qualifications

  • Cover letter and writing sample in your application.
  • Bachelor's degree, preferably in journalism, communications, marketing, English, or a related field.
  • Minimum 2 years’ experience in grant writing, events, marketing, journalism, or similar area.
  • Familiarity with foundation/corporate solicitations, government funding, non-profit setting, or other issues related to civil/human rights is beneficial.
  • Exceptional written and oral communication skills.
  • Strong organization, research, and analysis skills.
  • Extremely high attention to detail, consistent and reliable follow through, and ability to prioritize.
  • High energy, creative self-starter who will take initiative and work independently to achieve results, but can also collaborate and contribute positively to team efforts.
  • Strong computer skills, particularly in Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, and Raiser’s Edge.
  • Basic photography skills

Bilingual skills desirable. Prior successful experience in events and grant writing strongly preferred.

Apply on Heartland Alliance's job board.


Paralegal, Immigrant Children's Protection Project

The paralegal provides general paralegal support for non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children (UICs) seeking protection through asylum, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) and other forms of relief. The paralegal conducts intake, research, case review, documentation preparation and other related tasks to support general operations and the work of staff and pro bono attorneys.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Responds to NIJC’s non-detained UIC hotline and conducts intake, as assigned.
  • Conducts legal and factual research.
  • Assesses cases to determine eligibility.
  • Conducts interviews with clients and witnesses.
  • Drafts applications, affidavits, letters and/or legal pleadings and prepares supporting documentation.
  • Prepares materials for submission to Department of Homeland Security, Immigration Court, or other entities as appropriate.
  • Reviews, analyzes and presents cases to supervisor.
  • Assists in the placement of SIJS cases with pro bono attorneys and tracks individual cases and outcomes
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.
  • Maintains complete, thorough, accurate and current records in an organized fashion in accordance with legal standards, rules and ethics.
  • Ensures the accuracy, substance and timeliness of statistical and narrative reports, projects, schedules and other relevant work products.
  • In accord with organizational policies and the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflicts of interest.

Qualifications:

  • Education and/or Experience: Bachelors degree with demonstrated experience working with immigrants, refugees and/or asylum seekers. At least one year of experience working with these populations preferred.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and Spanish is required. Ability to communicate articulately with internal and external audiences.
  • Other Qualifications: Excellent writing, editing, organizational and computer skills required. Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and perform well under strict deadlines.

Apply on Heartland Alliance's job board.


Reception Area Scheduler

This position provides customer, clerical, and administrative support services to the National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) and facilitates reception area, scheduling of program assignments, and related clerical services. This position screens a high volume of incoming calls and schedules appointments and/or directs calls to the appropriate NIJC staff. This position is also responsible for the deployment of and conversion of hard files to electronic records keeping system for legal documents, initial case assessment and scheduling of individuals for appointments for appropriate programs; generating reports from the database; and ensuring compliance with office policies and procedures. This position also requires familiarity with specific program needs and procedures.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Greets visitors and performs operator functions, answers incoming calls and
    • Screens requests for assistance, evaluates callers’ service need, and routes calls as needed or responds appropriately
    • Accurately directs incoming calls from participants, community organizations, and other external parties
    • Accurately communicates program information and process to participants
    • Registers and assesses participants for program eligibility
    • Routes visitors and clients and directs incoming mail and correspondence to the appropriate staff person
    • Possess good verbal communication and human relations skills, and responds to requests within the parameters of the position. Has in-depth knowledge of the program and overall organization operations and answers questions clients and visitors may have in relation to organization-wide program and administrative functions
    • Maintains up-to-date information on emergency and other services, and provides such information to callers and visitors as needed
    • Responsible for reporting of pending appointments, completed assignments, and timely transmittal of any fee income to the appropriate concerned parties under the direction of the Program Director
  • Implements electronic scanning and uploading of client files into NIJC’s database, in accord with program record retention guidelines and regulations
    • Reviews closed files to determine documents to be scanned into NIJC’s database
    • Scans appropriate content of files
    • Oversees file destruction of scanned files
  • Maintains and updates appointment scheduling system including:
    • Assesses callers to determine appropriate scheduling for different NIJC projects
    • Conducts income assessment with clients
    • Enters accurate information into NIJC’s database and appointment systems when scheduling participants with appropriate staff and project
    • Educates participants regarding responsibilities, services, fees, grievance policy and confidentiality
  • Accurately collects fees, enters fee data into database, and issues receipts
    • Produces accurate fee reports and reconciles fees collected
    • Accurately assesses, explains and collects fees, and issues receipts to participants
    • Collects financial obligations, arranges method of payments and resolves accounts according to standard protocols
    • Processes cash and credit card payments and reconciles cash receipts to cash-on-hand daily
    • Manages contents of NIJC safes, in accord with program cash, and cash equivalent management policies
  • Other Duties
    • Acts as liaison between the Program and the office building management, maintenance staff, etc., resolves routine problems and refers non-routine problems appropriately
    • Acts as a liaison between Financial Accountability Services Department and Program in relation to Petty Cash, incoming payments, and funds encounter forms, purchase orders, etc.
    • Prepares data reports and analysis as assigned
    • Assumes responsibility for clerical and support components of other Program tasks and special projects
    • Routine clerical support tasks for the program including but not limited to word-processing, filing, photocopying, distribution of mail, etc.
    • Attends and participates in clerical team meetings and/or related projects. Chairs clerical team meetings and presents topics for clerical training seminars as requested. Ensures the comfort of visitors in the reception area. Maintains an appropriate professional demeanor at all times, towards co-workers, visitors, clients, supervisors and all others
    • Maintains office equipment, orders office supplies and forms as needed and reports needs to the Program Director
    • Prepares and submits purchase orders through Heartland Alliance’s electronic system
    • Maintains an appropriate professional demeanor towards co-workers, visitors, clients, supervisors, and all others

Qualifications:

  • Education and/or Experience: High School Diploma or GED and three years of experience; Associate Degree and one year of experience; or a bachelor's degree.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in written and spoken English and Spanish is required.
  • Computer Skills: Intermediate computer skills including Microsoft Office applications, internet searching and web-based database.

Apply on Heartland Alliance's job board.


Staff Attorney, Immigrant Children's Protection Project

This position provides legal representation and immigration service counseling to immigrants and refugees appearing before the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS). The staff attorney advocates for clients before other government administrative agencies and before other service agencies, as needed and/or as appropriate. This position works with NIJC's Immigrant Children's Protection Project, which helps children who entered the country as unaccompanied minors assess their options for immigration legal relief.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

  • Conducts preliminary intake interview, gathers all relevant facts for presentation at Unit meetings. Makes assessment of income eligibility and makes appropriate referrals for those individuals not eligible for organization services. Recommends exceptions to financial guidelines to the supervisor.
  • Develops and implements preliminary case strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure. Develops further strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure. Develops further strategy in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares the case for hearing, drafting legal papers, engaging in negotiation, presenting evidence, etc. in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Conducts assessment of client on social, psychological and economic functioning and determines appropriate interventions and referrals. Ensures the provision of a wide range of services for clients.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the department. Has in-depth knowledge of legal and other resources.  Provides a wide range of court advocacy services.
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures. Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it apples to the representation of immigrants and refugees.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations. Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including public speaking.
  • In accord with the ethical standards required of the legal profession, the Code of Professional Responsibility, preserves client confidentiality, accounts for client monies and avoids conflict of interest.
  • Maintains complete and accurate client records. Prepares timely statistical reports. Conducts quarterly case audits for presentation and review of the supervisor.
  • Participates in training on immigration procedures as assigned by the supervisor. May conduct training sessions as assigned by the supervisor.
  • Participates in developing and implementing special projects, may have the primary responsibility for a project involving presentation of a particular ethnic group, immigration problem or advocacy issues on a systematic level.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns. Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Interprets and translates for department and other organization staff as needed.

Qualifications:

  • Education and/or Experience: Juris Doctorate Degree required; and one year of direct experience in social service counseling and/or legal representation.
  • Language Skills: Ability to read, analyze, and interpret general business periodicals, professional journals, technical procedures, or governmental regulations. Ability to write reports, business correspondence, and procedure manuals. Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of managers, clients, customers, and the general public.  Ability to read, speak and write in at least one non-English language.

Apply on Heartland Alliance's job board.


Internships

NIJC offers internships to law students and undergraduate students to work in a variety of its different legal services programs. The internships present an excellent opportunity to learn more about U.S. immigration law and policies while making a difference in the lives of low-income and impoverished individuals who are in need of legal representation. NIJC is now accepting applications for spring 2018 part-time internships.

Click here for more information about available internships and how to apply.


Fellowships

NIJC will be accepting applications for post-graduate legal fellowships. NIJC is open to any funding source identified by a candidate, but expects to, at a minimum, identify a candidate for an Equal Justice Works Fellowship application, and a Skadden Fellowship or a Soros Fellowship. NIJC also welcomes applicants who will be seeking post-graduate fellowship funding through their own law schools. Please contact Hiroki Keaveney if you are interested in a fellowship. No phone calls please.

Application Materials:

  1. Cover Letter: Explain your interest in NIJC and any experiences you have working with immigrant populations.
  2. Resume: Identify any language skills that you have. Fluency in Spanish is required for almost all positions with NIJC.
  3. Writing Sample: Provide a 5-10 page excerpt from a document you have produced in law school or in a legal position that is your own work.
  4. Brief Project Proposal: Most post-graduate legal fellowships require applicants to propose a specific project. Please give a brief description of the kind of work you would like to do. Your proposal should explain why that work is important and how you think it would complement NIJC’s existing work. NIJC will work with the selected candidate to ensure a strong proposal. Candidates are welcome to propose work with any of NIJC’s existing projects, but we are most interested in individuals who are interested in working with immigrant victims of trafficking, detained immigrants, and/or asylum seekers.
  5. Other: If you would like NIJC to host you for a fellowship other than any of the ones listed above, please provide a description of the fellowship and its requirements with your application. In addition to the above information, finalists will be asked to provide references and transcripts, and will be selected for various rounds of interviews.
     

All positions are based out of NIJC's Chicago loop office unless otherwise indicated in the job description.

NIJC is a program of the Heartland Alliance for Human Needs & Human Rights that champions the human rights and improves the lives of men, women, and children who are threatened by poverty or danger. For more than 100 years we have been providing solutions- both through services and policy- that move individuals from crisis to stability and on to success. Heartland Alliance's work in housing, health care, legal protections, and economic security serves more than 100,000 people annually, helping them build better lives. Heartland Alliance makes all hiring and employment decisions without regard to race, creed, color, age, gender, gender identity, marital or parental status, religion, ancestry, national origin, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, sexual identity, immigrant status, political affiliation or belief, ex-offender status (depending on the offense and position to be filled), unfavorable military discharge, membership in an organization whose primary purpose is the protection of civil rights or improvement of living conditions and human relations, height, weight, or HIV infection, in accord with the Organization's AIDS Policy Statement of September, 1987. Individuals with disabilities requiring accommodation should contact the Employee Services Office at (312) 660-1431.