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Open positions at the National Immigrant Justice Center: 

 

 

Director Positions:

Director of Strategy and Programs

 

Senior Attorney and Supervisor Positions:

Legal Supervisor- Immigrant Legal Defense Project

Senior Attorney - Asylum Project

Senior Attorney - Detention Project

Senior Attorney- Immigrant Children's Protection Project

Supervising Attorney - Immigrant Children's Protection Project

 

Staff Attorney Positions:

Staff Attorney - Asylum Project

Staff Attorney - Asylum Project (Non-detained Kids)

Staff Attorney - Detention Project

Staff Attorney - Immigrant Children's Protection Project (Chicago)

Staff Attorney - Immigrant Legal Defense Project

Staff Attorney - LGBTQ Project

 

Operations Positions:

Data Management Specialist

 

Communications Positions:

Communications Strategist

 

Coordinator Positions:

Development Associate

Immigration Resources Coordinator

 

Paralegal Positions:

Paralegal- Detention Project

Paralegal - Goshen Office

 

AmeriCorps VISTA Positions:

Volunteer Coordinator

 

Internships & Fellowships:

Internships

Schreiber Fellowship 2023-2025 & other fellowships

 

 

 

 

Director of Strategies and Programs

The Director of Strategy and Programs will be a member of NIJC’s Senior Management team, reporting to the Executive Director. The Director of Strategy and Programs will manage and coordinate NIJC’s legal service programs, providing strategic leadership, vision, and assessment of NIJC’s programs on a local, regional and national level. The Director of Strategy and Programs will ensure current and future programs are consistent with NIJC’s strategic plan and goals. The ideal candidate is an individual with management experience, an effective communicator and adaptable. The candidate should also demonstrate an ability to build teams, and identify priorities and coordinate strategies across projects and innovate on new projects. The Director of Strategy and Programs will institute best practices in recruiting and hiring and foster professional development among NIJC staff members. The Director of Strategy and Programs will collaborate and support a vision for the most efficient and effective implementation of its legal programs to advance NIJC’s mission.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

Strategy, Leadership, and Management  

  • Provide strategic leadership and implementation of NIJC’s mission and strategic plan.
  • Develop measurable metrics consistent with NIJC’s strategic plan.
  • Develop a 3- year growth plan for NIJC’s legal services programs, including NIJC’s position in the field, impact, staffing, and budget necessary to achieve.
  • Manage legal services directors and associate directors to build their teams and retain high-performing staff.
  • Identify key legal issues and NIJC’s role in advancing those issues.  
  • Liaise with and coordinate strategic growth among all NIJC projects, including litigation, policy, and communications.  
  • Ensure NIJC’s continued growth and success and to enhance NIJC’s reputation and opportunities for collaboration with community partners, pro bono attorneys, funders and other stakeholders.
  • Develop staffing infrastructure and plan to support growth.
  • Coordinate launch of new legal programs or initiatives.     

Operations

  • Work with the Executive Director, COO and budget team in the allocation of resources and the development, implementation, and monitoring of programs, in accordance with strategic priorities that will enable NIJC to remain a leader in its field.
  • Evaluate NIJC’s legal services, identify new ways of executing priorities, recommend changes to drive business process improvement using an innovative approach. 
  • Support project leaders to identify opportunities to work together, create connections and use a collaborative approach to build teams and grow NIJC’s offerings.
  • Work with directors and associate directors to ensure quality and creativity in NIJC legal programs and ensure that each project’s qualitative and quantitative measurements are implemented and met Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) in NIJC legal programs and in our contracts and grants.
  • Work with the pro bono manager to assess NIJC’s pro bono processes, identify issues and propose solutions to same. 
  • Work with COO and NIJC’s technology staff to identify technologies that can improve NIJC’s legal programs, providing recommendations for adjustments to improve service delivery.
  • Provide leadership and direction for prioritizing programming and resources in accordance with NIJC’s long term goals.
  • Identify and evaluate opportunities to deliver recommendations on what NIJC needs to prioritize.
  • Write and present reports weekly to the Executive Director.
  • Present to NIJC Leadership Board on new initiatives or changes in NIJC’s priorities. 

Performance Management

  • Support directors and associate directors to develop and meet KPIs, measurement and evaluation, including metrics to track progress.
  • Encourage trust and passion for improving NIJC’s systems and processes responsive to the internal and external environment by demonstrating leadership and communicating a vision that leads to organizational excellence.  
  • Build a positive culture across teams that allows for the introduction of new processes or services and the winding down of services that are no longer responsive to the needs of the community and/or NIJC priorities.   
  • Identify training opportunities, professional growth and retention strategies for team members.
  • Manage, develop, coach and train supervisees on managing their projects  

External Relations and Advocacy

  • Identify areas for NIJC to collaborate and opportunities to strengthen NIJC’s reputation.   
  • Support the drafting of concept notes, proposals and reports.  
  • Serve as a spokesperson and champion for NIJC’s legal programs, promoting NIJC and making tough decisions to maintain NIJC’s position as a leader in the immigrant rights movement.
  • Coordinate and collaborate closely with NIJC’s Policy, Communications and Litigation teams to ensure alignment of vision and goals.

Competencies include:

  • Strong leadership skills, including in the areas of strategic planning and business processes, preferably with experience overseeing legal programs
  • Experienced manager of people, including demonstrated strength managing performance evaluation  
  • Experience achieving results within a climate of change, where external forces remain uncertain and where stakeholders may have conflicting objectives
  • Exceptional communicator, ability to work with a diverse, talented group of legal professionals to build trust, collaboration, and a culture that welcomes change
  • Demonstrated strength in managing and resolving conflict
  • Subscribes to NIJC values of advancing due process and human rights protections for immigrants and refugees
  • Experience balancing long-term strategic vision with short-term implementation, taking into account funding limitations
  • Experience seeing the big picture, planning for growth and having a vision to achieve operational efficiency along the way, while overseeing and supporting details of implementation.
  • Strong financial acumen and ability to assess projects  
  • Knowledge of the law, particularly immigration, civil rights, and human rights law is preferred
  • Commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion; ability to develop and implement creative innovations to advance anti-racist approaches in the workplace
  • Exceptional verbal and written communication skills and experience in grant writing and reporting
  • Demonstrated skill in maintaining the balance between running a successful business operation and maintaining a strong mission focus as a nonprofit organization

Qualifications

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education: Advanced degree (JD or MBA) preferred
  • Experience: Five to 10 years of leadership experience, including experience working with an executive director and senior management team to achieve goals.
  • Proven experience building teams and strengthening organizational leadership
  • Experience in organizational change management
  • Legal experience preferred, particularly immigration law experience
  • Computer Skills: Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite.
  • Reasoning Ability: Excellent analytical skills required.

Apply for the Director of Strategies and Programs position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Legal Supervisor- Immigrant Legal Defense Project

The Legal Supervisor supervises a legal team and provides legal representation and counseling to non-detained immigrants appearing before the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Department of State (DOS), and if appropriate, before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) and the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). This person will supervise an in-house legal team, and ensure quality legal counsel and representation, provide case support , and oversee the day-to-day operations, as well as the ongoing training and professional development of supervisees.  The person may supervise a Pro Bono Project, such as Citizenship, and provide training, technical support and legal review to volunteer attorneys for new and pending cases in the project.  As a member of NIJC’s supervisory team, the supervisor will on occasion collaborate with NIJC’s other legal services projects, pro bono partners, litigation, policy and communications teams. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Supervises legal services and oversees paralegals, attorneys, interns and support staff providing legal services; including the development of case strategy, preparation, and representation before governmental agencies.
  • Provides training, technical support and legal review to volunteer attorneys.
  • Ensures accurate data entry by paralegals, attorneys, and interns.
  • Oversees and reviews legal intakes; makes legal assessments and determinations regarding representation.
  • Ensures timely case preparation, including case opening process, preparing filings, trial preparation, appeals, case closures, and other case management practices.
  • Works with supervisory team to build a strong team and oversee the team’s projects.
  • Provides recommendations based on case trends to inform project-based strategic decisions.
  • Maintains and develops strategic partnerships with key stakeholders.
  • Conducts factual and legal research.
  • Provides legal representation to immigrants in immigration proceedings, including before an immigration officer, an immigration judge, and before the Board of Immigration Appeals as appropriate.
  • Drafts correspondence and documents, including applications, briefs and reports.
  • Improves delivery of legal services, including use of technology to improve efficiency.
  • Trains lawyers and non-lawyers in the field of immigration law, especially in the areas of VAWA and U Visas.
  • Conducts legal presentations regarding law and case(s) to NIJC staff and members of the immigrant community.
  • Maintains accurate, thorough and timely records.
  • Identifies trends and emerging issues and responses to issues.
  • Maintains current knowledge regarding immigration law and policies and procedures.
  • Advances an anti-racist organization that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications: 

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: Juris doctor or a bachelor’s degree with at least 3 years’ experience as a Department of Justice accredited representative. Previous supervisory experience preferred but not required.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and Spanish is required . Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated competency in public speaking and strong interpersonal skills required.  Additional non-English language skills are preferred.
  • Computer Skills: Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems; and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance.
  • Driving: May be required to have a current, valid IL Driver’s License.  May be required to drive their own vehicle and/or an Organization vehicle to and from sites.
  • Reasoning Ability: Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists.  Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Immigrant Legal Defense Legal Supervisor position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Senior Attorney - Asylum Project

The senior attorney position focuses on unaccompanied immigrant children (UICs) and other vulnerable children and youth, including those involved in the child welfare system. The attorney will provide legal representation before U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Immigration Court, with a focus on complex cases involving UICs.  The position also involves representation of parents or guardians in Illinois family courts to obtain predicate orders for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (“SIJS”), as well as technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to SIJS matters. The attorney will conduct age-appropriate, trauma-informed interviews with child clients and their family members, and may also advocate for clients before other agencies including schools, law enforcement, public benefits agencies, and others. The attorney should be fluent in spoken and written Spanish. Experience working with low-income immigrants, children, or survivors of violence preferred.

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 complex case strategies in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares cases for interview or hearing, including drafting legal papers, conducting client advocacy, 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.
  • With the Supervisor and NIJC Pro Bono Manager, prepares cases for recruitment of pro bono counsel, and provides technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to NIJC cases..
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures. Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with EOIR, DHS, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations as necessary.  Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including public speaking. 
  • Refers clients for necessary social and/or economic assistance when determined to be necessary.
  • Participates in developing and implementing special projects. May have the primary responsibility for a project involving a specific immigration challenge or advocacy issues on a systematic level.
  • 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.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Interprets and translates for project staff as needed.
  • Committed to advancing NIJC’s mission and vision
  • Supports NIJC’s efforts to advance diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understands and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Advances an anti-racist organization that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: A law degree (JD), license to practice law, and a minimum of three years’ experience in the area of immigration law, with additional experience in family law preferred ; self-motivated and committed to civil liberties advocacy; ability to represent individuals in complex cases and to formulate and implement sophisticated legal strategies; demonstrated ability to work cooperatively on a variety of projects with lawyers, other staff members, and diverse community organizations and coalitions.
  • Language Skills:  High proficiency or fluency in spoken and written Spanish required.  Excellent writing and analytical skills; Ability to communicate effectively in legal and non-legal settings with a wide range of individuals and organizations. Ability to read, analyze, and interpret 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, and the general public. 
  • Other Skills and Qualifications: Must successfully pass background check. Excellent writing, editing, organizational and computer skills required.  Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and perform well under strict deadlines.

Apply for the Asylum Project Senior Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Senior Attorney - Detention Project

This position provides legal representation and counseling to immigrants and asylum-seekers appearing before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with a focus on representation of individuals in DHS custody in their bond and removal proceedings, and appeals before the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). Legal representation may also include work on federal habeas corpus petitions challenging the legality of clients’ detention and detention conditions. The position also provides technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to NIJC cases, both locally and nationally. The Senior Attorney will serve as a mentor to junior staff, as well as the development of new initiatives or projects within the team.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

  • Minimum 3 years’ experience in the area of immigration law, with a strong preference for candidates with a background in removal defense and the intersection of criminal and immigration law, or related fields
  • 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 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. 
    • With the Supervisor and NIJC Pro Bono Manager, prepares cases for recruitment of pro bono counsel, and provides technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to NIJC cases, locally and nationally.
    • Travel to detention centers in the Chicago area as well as nationwide is required.
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.  Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants and asylum seekers.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with EOIR, DHS, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations as necessary.  Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including through public speaking engagements or trainings. 
  • 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.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understand and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:  Juris Doctorate Degree required; minimum of three years’ experience in removal defense and/or the intersection of criminal and immigration law.
  • 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. Spanish language fluency is preferred but not required, and speakers of other languages are encouraged to apply.
  • Mathematical Skills:  Ability to add, subtract, multiply, and divide in all units of measure, using whole numbers, common fractions, and decimals.  Ability to compute rate, ratio, and percent and to draw and interpret bar graphs.
  • Reasoning Ability:  Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Detention Project Senior Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Senior Attorney- Immigrant Children's Protection Program

The senior attorney position is housed in NIJC’s Children’s Project, focusing on unaccompanied immigrant children (UICs). The attorney will provide legal representation before U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Immigration Court, with a focus on complex cases involving UICs.  The attorney will conduct age-appropriate, trauma-informed interviews with child clients and their family members, and may also advocate for clients before other agencies including schools, law enforcement, public benefits agencies, and others. The attorney should be fluent in spoken and written Spanish. Experience working with low-income immigrants, children, or survivors of violence preferred.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Conducts Know Your Rights presentations and preliminary intake interviews, gathers all relevant facts, and makes legal assessments. 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 complex case strategies in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares cases for interview or hearing, including drafting legal papers, conducting client advocacy, presenting evidence, etc. in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the department. Has in-depth knowledge of legal and other resources. 
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures. Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with EOIR, DHS, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations as necessary.  Interprets immigration and department policies and programs to the public, including public speaking. 
  • Refers clients for necessary social and/or economic assistance when determined to be necessary.
  • Participates in developing and implementing special projects. May have the primary responsibility for a project involving a specific immigration challenge or advocacy issues on a systematic level.
  • Supervises project paralegals, reviews intakes, and provides guidance and mentorship.
  • 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.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Interprets and translates for project staff as needed.
  • Committed to advancing NIJC’s mission and vision
  • Supports NIJC’s efforts to advance diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understands and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: A law degree (JD), license to practice law, and a minimum of three years’ experience in the area of immigration law, with additional experience in family law preferred. Self-motivated and committed to civil liberties advocacy; ability to represent individuals in complex cases and to formulate and implement sophisticated legal strategies; demonstrated ability to work cooperatively on a variety of projects with lawyers, other staff members, and diverse community organizations and coalitions.
  • Language Skills: High proficiency or fluency in spoken and written Spanish required.  Excellent writing and analytical skills; Ability to communicate effectively in legal and non-legal settings with a wide range of individuals and organizations. Ability to read, analyze, and interpret 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. 
  • Reasoning Ability: Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Immigrant Children's Protection Project Senior Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Supervising Attorney - Immigrant Children's Protection Project

NIJC is looking for an energetic, visionary, and committed supervising attorney to join the Children’s Protection Project. The Supervising Attorney provides legal services and oversees the provision of legal services, to detained and non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children before U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the immigration court, and other government administrative agencies. The person in this role will supervise a team of lawyers and/or paralegals, ensure quality legal counsel and representation, provide case support, and oversee the day-to-day operations, as well as the ongoing training and professional development of supervisees.  As a member of NIJC’s supervisory team, the supervisor will collaborate with NIJC’s other legal services projects, litigation, policy and communications teams. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Supervises legal services and oversees paralegals and attorneys providing legal services; including the development of case strategy, preparation, and representation before governmental agencies
  • Ensures accurate data entry by paralegals, attorneys, and interns
  • Oversees and reviews legal intakes; makes legal assessments and determinations regarding representation
  • Ensures timely case preparation, including case opening process, preparing filings, trial preparation, appeals, case closures, and other case management practices
  • Works with supervisory team to build a strong team and oversee the team’s projects
  • Provides recommendations based on case trends to inform project-based strategic decisions
  • Maintains and develops strategic partnerships with key stakeholders
  • Conducts factual and legal research.
  • Provides legal representation to immigrants in immigration proceedings, including before an immigration officer, an immigration judge, and in federal court, as appropriate.
  • Drafts correspondence and documents, including applications, briefs and reports.
  • Improves delivery of legal services, including use of technology to improve efficiency
  • Trains lawyers and non-lawyers in the field of immigration law.
  • Conducts legal presentations regarding law and case(s) to NIJC staff, managing attorney(s) and members of the immigrant community.
  • Maintains accurate, thorough and timely records.
  • Identifies trends and emerging issues and responses to issues
  • Maintains current knowledge regarding immigration law and policies and procedures.
  • Advances an anti-racist organization that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.  The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:  A law degree (JD), license to practice law and at least 3 years’ experience in the legal field, preferably in the field of immigration law. Previous supervisory experience preferred but not required.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and Spanish is required. Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated competency in public speaking and strong interpersonal skills required.  Additional non-English language skills are preferred.
  • Computer Skills:  Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems; and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance.
  • Driving: May be required to have a current, valid IL Driver’s License.  May be required to drive their own vehicle and/or an Organization vehicle to and from sites.
  • Reasoning Ability:  Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists.  Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Immigrant Children's Protection Project Supervising Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Staff Attorney - Asylum Project

This position provides legal representation and immigration legal service counseling to immigrants appearing before the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with a focus on the representation of asylum seekers, including children, families, and adults. The position may provide technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to NIJC cases.  A Staff Attorney advocates for clients before other government administrative agencies and before other service agencies, as needed and/or as appropriate. 

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 case strategy in consultation with supervisor.
  • Prepares cases for interview or hearing, including drafting legal papers, conducting client advocacy, presenting evidence, etc. in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the department.  Has in-depth knowledge of legal and other resources. 
  • With the Supervisor and NIJC Pro Bono Coordinator, prepares cases for recruitment of pro bono counsel
  • Provides technical support to pro bono counsel assigned to NIJC cases.
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.  Remains current on implications of criminal and civil law as it applies to the representation of immigrants.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with EOIR, DHS, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), government and social service organizations and community organizations as necessary.  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.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understands and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:   Juris Doctorate Degree required; and one year of direct experience in social service counseling and/or legal representation.
  • Language Skills:   High proficiency or fluency in Spanish required. Ability to read, analyze, and interpret 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. 

Apply for the Asylum Project Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Staff Attorney - Asylum Project (Non-detained Kids)

This position is housed in NIJC’s Asylum Project, but specifically focuses on non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children and their families, particularly those eligible for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) and Asylum. The attorney will provide legal representation before U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Immigration Court, and may also represent parents or guardians in family court as they petition for SIJS predicate orders for their minor children. The attorney will conduct age-appropriate, trauma-informed interviews with child clients and their family members, and may also advocate for clients before other agencies including schools, law enforcement, public benefits agencies, and others. The attorney will also provide training and technical support to pro bono attorneys assigned to NIJC cases. The attorney should be proficient in spoken and written Spanish. Experience working with low-income immigrants, children, or survivors of violence preferred.

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 applies 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.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understand and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:   Juris Doctorate Degree required; and one year of direct experience in social service counseling and/or legal representation.
  • Language Skills:   Fluency in spoken and written Spanish is required. 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.

Apply for the Non-detained Kids Asylum Project Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Staff Attorney - Detention Project

This position provides legal representation and immigration consultations to immigrants within the custody of Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE), including Chicago and State of Illinois residents who have been detained by ICE.  The Staff Attorney will advocate for clients before the Immigration Court, ICE, and on occasion USCIS.  As the majority of client work will be in Spanish, this position requires Spanish fluency.

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 applies 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.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understand and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • 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 Spanish.
  • Mathematical Skills:   Ability to add, subtract, multiply, and divide in all units of measure, using whole numbers, common fractions, and decimals.  Ability to compute rate, ratio, and percent and to draw and interpret bar graphs.
  • Reasoning Ability:   Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Detention Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Staff Attorney - Immigrant Children's Protection Project (Chicago)

This position provides legal representation and counseling to detained and non-detained unaccompanied immigrant children before U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) and the Chicago Immigration Court.  A Staff Attorney also advocates for clients before other government administrative agencies and before other service agencies, as needed and/or as appropriate.  

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

  • Conducts preliminary intake interviews. Gathers all relevant facts for each case for presentation at team meetings or to legal supervisors.  Makes assessments of income eligibility, if applicable, and makes appropriate referrals for those individuals not eligible for NIJC services.  Recommends exceptions to financial guidelines to supervisors when appropriate.
  • Develops and implements case strategy in terms of immigration law and procedure. 
  • Prepares cases for interviews and/or hearings, drafting legal cover letters and briefs, engaging in negotiation, presenting evidence, etc., in accord with the Code of Professional Responsibility for the legal profession.
  • Provides Know Your Rights presentations to detained children.
  • Carries a volume of work as required by the project. 
  • Remains current on immigration law, policies and procedures.  Remains current on criminal and civil law as they apply to the representation of immigrants and refugees.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with all stakeholders, including with representatives of government agencies, the Immigration Court, and family members and caretakers of clients. 
  • Interprets immigration laws and governmental policies and programs for the public, including at outreach and public speaking events. 
  • 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 conflicts of interest.
  • Maintains complete and accurate client records.  Ensures timely entry of all statistical data into databases/servers.  Conducts independent and team case audits. 
  • Participates in training on immigration law and procedures as assigned by legal supervisors.  May conduct trainings as assigned by legal supervisors, as well.
  • Participates in developing and implementing special projects.   Such projects could include presentations on certain legal issues, problems, topics, or developments in immigration law, or new initiatives within the project relating to representation of individual clients or groups of clients.
  • Identifies trends and recurring legal and social concerns.  Recommends strategies for solutions and other needed advocacy.
  • Interprets for NIJC clients and staff and translates documents and other materials as needed.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, private funding sources, NIJC plans/policies, and project guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff trainings to ensure understanding of and adherence to such standards.  Requests assistance or guidance from legal supervisors as needed to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.  The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:   Juris Doctorate Degree required. One year of direct experience in legal representation preferred.
  • Language Skills:   Ability to read, analyze, and interpret case law, statutes, governmental regulations, professional journals, and other forms of legal writing.  Ability to write legal briefs, cover letters, procedural guidelines, and professional emails and other correspondence.  Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from co-workers, managers, clients, and the general public.  Ability to read, speak, and write in Spanish.  Additional non-English language skills are preferred.
  • Driving: May be required to have a current, valid IL Driver’s License.  May be required to drive their own vehicle and/or an Organization vehicle to and from sites.
  • Mathematical Skills:   Ability to add, subtract, multiply, and divide in all units of measure, using whole numbers, common fractions, and decimals.  Ability to compute rate, ratio, and percent and to draw and interpret bar graphs.
  • Reasoning Ability:   Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists.  Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Immigrant Children's Protection Project Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Staff Attorney - Immigrant Legal Defense Project

NIJC's Immigrant Legal Defense Project is seeking an attorney to provide legal consultations, advice and representation to low-income immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers before the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of State, and U.S. Department of Justice.  This staff attorney position requires Spanish fluency, ability to engage in community outreach, and provide legal consultations at off-site locations.

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 applies 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.
  • Adheres to professional standards as outlined by governmental bodies, (and/or other appropriate professional associations), private funding sources, Organization plans/policies and Unit guidelines.  Participates in periodic evaluative reviews and/or in-house and external staff training to ensure that she/he understands and continues to adhere to such standards.  Initiates requests for assistance or guidance from Supervisor to address new issues or complex concepts affecting adherence to professional standards.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:   Juris Doctorate Degree required; and one year of direct experience in social service counseling and/or legal representation.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English and Spanish is required. Excellent oral and written communication skills. Demonstrated competency in public speaking and strong interpersonal skills required.  Additional non-English language skills are preferred.
  • Computer Skills:  Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems; and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance.
  • Reasoning Ability:   Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.

Apply for the Immigrant Legal Defense Project Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board. 

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Staff Attorney - LGBTQ Project

The National Immigrant Justice Center’s LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Initiative provides comprehensive representation to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) immigrants and asylum seekers as well as to those living with HIV/AIDS.  With the support of pro bono attorneys, the project (1) represents immigrants and asylum seekers before United States Citizenship & Immigration Services, the Immigration Courts (primarily in Chicago), the Board of Immigration Appeals, and the U.S. Courts of Appeals, (2) advocates for improvements in conditions for detained LGBT asylum seekers, and (3) collaborates with members of local and national immigrant and LGBTQ advocacy groups to raise awareness of the issues facing the LGBTQ immigrant population. 

NIJC seeks a staff attorney who would participate in all areas of the LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Initiative’s work, with a particular focus on direct representation and pro bono attorney support of detained LGBTQ asylum seekers coming in from the Tijuana area into the San Diego area. This position with NIJC’s LGBTQ Immigrant Rights Initiative is part of a program with partner organizations to address the needs of LGBTQ individuals at the border.

Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Provide Individual Representation: The staff attorney will be responsible for handling cases before both USCIS and the Immigration Courts.  Case types will likely include requests for: asylum, withholding of removal, and relief under the Convention Against Torture; U visas; cancellation of removal; and permanent residency. Because many of the Project’s clients are detained, representation will also include appearing at bond hearings and filing administrative release requests.
  • Screen Potential Cases: The staff attorney will interview potential clients and analyze cases to discern eligibility for immigration benefits. They will also review transcripts and administrative records and make recommendations regarding appellate representation for LGBTQ individuals.  All decisions to accept cases will be made at weekly project meetings in conjunction with supervising staff.
  • Conduct Legal Research: The staff attorney will conduct research on legal issues as well as country conditions for LGBT individuals abroad.  This research will be used both in individual cases and to support potential impact litigation and policy advocacy.
  • Monitor Detention Conditions: The staff attorney will work to improve access to legal support for LGBTQ immigrants and asylum seekers who are detained in facilities across the country. The attorney will identify locations where detained immigrants are held and work with local officials and non-profit organizations to ensure that LGBTQ individuals are informed of their legal rights.  The attorney will also monitor conditions for LGBTQ individuals in these facilities and may file administrative complaints with the Department of Homeland Security to address human rights violations in detention.
  • Advise Pro Bono Attorneys: Because the LGBT Immigrant Rights Initiative handles many cases with assistance from pro bono attorneys possessing limited immigration expertise, the staff attorney must be able to advise counsel about the law and process of representing individuals in immigration proceedings.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and Experience: Law degree from ABA accredited law school; law license; at least one year of experience in immigration law and/or refugee law; experience in immigration court and/or federal court.
  • Languages: Fluency in Spanish is required.
  • Collaboration: This position involves working closely with partner organizations. The staff attorney must be an excellent communicator and a team player.
  • Other Qualifications: Excellent writing, editing, organizational, analytical, administrative, and computer skills required. Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently and perform well under strict deadlines. Because the attorney will work with detainees in remote facilities, an applicant who is licensed and able to drive is preferred.

Apply for the LGBTQ Staff Attorney position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board. 

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Data Management Specialist

The Data Management Specialist, in collaboration with the Director of Data and Systems Management, will support NIJC in identifying best practices for data maintenance and develop protocols for ensuring the consistency, accuracy, and completeness of the data NIJC collects in LegalServer.  The Data Management Specialist will develop data dashboards, reports, and other methods to analyze, compile, and present data in understandable formats for internal management and external reporting. The Data Management Specialist will also support the Director of Data and Systems Management in identifying and implementing new LegalServer features and other technology tools to enhance NIJC's delivery of legal services.  This position is remote or hybrid.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Performs regular reviews to monitor data integrity for internal and regulatory compliance with funding requirements.
  • Develops regular reporting tools to assist internal users with program monitoring and evaluation.
  • Provides technical support, training, and assistance to internal users on LegalServer and other new technologies.
  • Develops guidelines for database training for staff and managers.
  • Develops policies and/or protocols for data entry and system use across multiple projects.
  • Collaborates with senior management, program leaders, and development team to optimize LegalServer to accurately report and tell the story of NIJC’s impact.
  • Assists the development and legal services teams in preparing reports for funders; maintains schedules for running funding reports and ensuring timely data entries.
  • Engages with national and statewide LegalServer stakeholder community.
  • Stays current on the use of technology in the delivery of legal services.
  • Other tasks that may be assigned.

Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree and three years of relevant experience required.
  • Proficiency in MS Office365 suite, specifically Excel, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems required.
  • Experience with data analysis and visualization tools (e.g., Tableau or PowerBI) highly preferred.
  • Prior experience with LegalServer highly preferred.
  • Experience using case management systems in a legal aid or law firm environment preferred. 
  • Working knowledge of VisualBasic scripting in Excel helpful.
  • Working knowledge of APIs and data structures helpful.
  • Prior experience working in a legal services/aid organization, non-profit or government setting helpful.
  • Familiarity with Raiser's Edge, Salsa, JotForm, and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance helpful.
  • Commitment to NIJC’s mission advocating for access to justice and human rights protections for all, particularly for immigrants and refugees.

Competencies

  • Project Management – Develops project plans and realistic action plans based on data-driven analysis; Prior experience in positions which demonstrated the ability to prioritize work and handle multiple responsibilities; Completes projects on time; Manages activities through timetables, metrics reporting, and visual presentation; Strong attention to detail, accuracy and presentation; Excellent analytical and evaluative skills
  • Relationship Management – Communicates purposes, goals, timelines, and strategies clearly; Ability to work independently in a diverse workplace and within a dynamic environment; Ability to plan and execute training for users in all positions.
  • Written Communication – Excellent written communication skills; Varies writing style to meet needs; Presents numerical data effectively; able to read and interpret written information.
  • Problem Solving – Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner; Gathers and analyzes information skillfully; Develops alternative solutions; Works well in group problem-solving situations.
  • Planning/Organizing – Prioritizes and plans work activities; Uses time efficiently; Plans for additional resources; Sets goals and objectives; Develops realistic action plans.
  • Adaptability – Adapts to changes in the work environment; Manages competing demands; Changes approach or method to best fit the situation; Able to deal with frequent change, delays, or unexpected events; Able to multi-task in a fast-paced environment.
  • Dependability – Follows instructions, responds to management direction; Takes responsibility for own actions; Keeps commitments; Commits to long hours of work when necessary to reach goals; Completes tasks on time or notifies appropriate person with alternative plan; Good sense of humor.

Apply for the Data Management Specialist position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Communications Strategist

NIJC is seeking a communications strategist to support our team in developing and executing narratives and public education strategies that defend immigrant rights and are anti-racist. The communications strategist will work with NIJC staff and clients to develop and implement traditional and digital media and other communications strategies to advance NIJC’s goals. Current priority areas of focus include ending immigration detention, restoring the right to asylum, stopping the criminalization of immigrants, and defending access to justice and due process for all immigrants.

The communications strategist, who reports to the Director of Communications, plays a key role in helping NIJC’s communications team to recognize internal and external opportunities and seize on them to educate NIJC audiences, media, and policy makers. This position will support the communications director and digital media team in creating and executing strategic communications plans to increase the visibility and impact of NIJC’s national advocacy. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Developing and executing pitches to national, regional, and local media that expose injustices in the immigration system and center NIJC clients and proposed solutions.
  • Drafting press releases, reporter pitches, op eds, letters to the editor, NIJC website content, and social media posts.
  • Supporting NIJC clients and staff as storytellers and thought leaders in communications projects and media stories. This includes interviewing clients about their experiences and collaboratively publishing their stories on NIJC’s channels or external sites, including op eds. It also means providing individualized support to help staff members and clients share their expertise and experiences in media interviews and at public events.
  • Serving as NIJC’s communications liaison to national coalitions and facilitating collaboration on projects that advance NIJC’s priorities.
  • Contributing to achieving the communications team’s objective of promoting anti-racist narratives and centering directly impacted individuals whenever possible.
  • Managing deadlines and maintaining open communication with NIJC colleagues about progression of projects and campaigns.
  • Assisting with interpretation during client media interviews and spokesperson engagements; translating press releases and other relevant content for NIJC’s website.
  • Advances an anti-racist organization that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: Three to five years of experience in professional communications or journalism, preferably in support of nonprofit social-justice-oriented organizations or campaigns
  • Demonstrated ability to think broadly and strategically about how narratives and storytelling can shift public perception of social and racial justice issues in the United States
  • Experience executing communications strategies and successfully pitching stories to national news outlets
  • Experience working with individuals who have been directly impacted by the U.S. immigration system
  • Compelling storyteller, preferably with professional writing and/or editing experience
  • Detail-oriented and organized project manager
  • Comfort using content management systems, social networking tools, and other media and web technologies
  • Bilingual Spanish preferred

Apply for the Communications Strategist position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Development Associate

The Development Associate reports to the Director of Development and is a member of the development team. This position contributes to NIJC’s strategic fundraising efforts by providing administrative support with development and fundraising activities. The Development Associate’s responsibilities fall into three primary areas: 1) support individual giving, including donor identification, cultivation, solicitation, and acknowledgment; 2) provide logistical support for NIJC’s fundraising and cultivation events; and 3) assist with seeking and managing grants from corporate, foundation, and government sources. A successful candidate must be a team player; possess excellent verbal and written communication skills; manage multiple priorities in a fast-paced, deadline-driven environment; be highly attentive to detail; exercise good judgment; and maintain confidentiality as necessary.

NIJC is currently a hybrid workplace, and the Development Associate can expect continued opportunity for remote and in-office work but must be based in the Chicagoland area to facilitate regular office coverage at NIJC’s downtown office to process donations and issue acknowledgment letters.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Development Operations

  • Manage gift acknowledgment process, including the drafting of acknowledgment letters, to ensure that all donations are acknowledged in a professional and timely manner in accordance with established protocols
  • Process donations by receiving and scanning checks, monitoring online donations, and providing the necessary information to Heartland Alliance’s donor information systems team for gift entry into the donor database
  • Monitor and maintain the organizations donor databases to ensure information is accurate and current, including performing regular data quality management projects (such as duplicate record cleanup, address updates, etc.)
  • Maintain development calendar to track fundraising activities, including events, appeals, and grant applications and reports.
  • Serve as the primary contact for donors and potential donors with administrative questions about contributions to NIJC and provide exemplary customer service
  • Manage the monthly donor process including updating donor payment information and ensuring annual tax letters are sent

Fundraising & Development Support

  • Assist with the planning, design, and production of fundraising events (including the Human Rights Awards and 5K for Immigrant Justice), performing tasks such as scheduling; invitation coordination; logistics; staffing; and post-event follow-up, tracking, and reports.
  • Support the Director of Development and Executive Director with donor identification, cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship, including conducting prospect research to identify new donors
  • Collaborate with the Development and Communications teams to identify and implement strategies to grow NIJC’s online fundraising effectiveness and efficiency
  • Develop materials for potential and current donors and funders demonstrating NIJC’s impact and response to emerging environment.
  • Work collaboratively with development and project staff to identify and research public and private funding opportunities to support existing and future programs/projects.
  • Under the supervision of the Director of Development, support the development of grant applications and reports, including writing narrative, compiling supplemental documentation, and collecting and analyzing data.

Teamwork

  • Participate in regular Development team and organization-wide meetings
  • Provide input into the Development team’s shared goals and annual plan and work collaboratively team members and stakeholders toward team goals
  • Represent NIJC at special events, business networking events, and community outreach events
  • Maintain a thorough understanding of the organization’s services, goals, mission, and strategic direction.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and Experience:  Bachelor's degree in a related field, such as communications, marketing, English, etc. One to two years of experience in fundraising, nonprofit administration, event coordination, communications, marketing, or similar area. Prior successful experience in fundraising events, individual giving campaigns, or grant seeking strongly preferred. Familiarity with philanthropy, immigration, legal aid, and/or issues related to civil/human rights is beneficial.
  • Language Skills: Exceptional written and verbal communication skills.
  • Strong organizational, research, and analytical skills and ability to manage complex, multi-step tasks.
  • Extremely high attention to detail, consistent and reliable follow-through, and ability to manage and prioritize multiple projects and deadlines simultaneously.
  • 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.
  • Computer Skills: Strong computer skills and proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite. Experience with Raiser’s Edge or a comparable donor management software preferred.

Competencies:

  • Planning/Organizing – Prioritizes and plans work activities; uses time efficiently; plans for additional resources; sets goals and objectives; organizes or schedules other people and their tasks; develops realistic action plans.
  • Written Communication – Writes clearly and informatively; edits work for spelling and grammar; varies writing style to meet needs; presents numerical data effectively; able to read and interpret written information.
  • Relationship Management – Communicates purposes, goals, timelines, and strategies clearly; establishes action plans for constituent interactions; manages multiple stakeholders with varying agendas with respect.
  • Problem Solving – Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner; gathers and analyzes information skillfully; develops alternative solutions; works well in group problem-solving situations; uses reason even when dealing with emotional topics.
  • Adaptability – Adapts to changes in the work environment; manages competing demands; changes approach or method to best fit the situation; able to deal with frequent change, delays, or unexpected events; able to multi-task and lead in a fast-paced environment.
  • Dependability – Follows instructions, responds to management direction; takes responsibility for own actions; keeps commitments; commits to long hours of work when necessary to reach goals; completes tasks.
  • Quantity - Meets productivity standards; completes work in timely manner; strives to increase productivity; works quickly.

Apply for the Development Associate position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Immigration Resources Coordinator

The coordinator will serve as the lead person to identify and establish relationships with social service organizations in Chicago and throughout the Midwest to facilitate referrals for NIJC clients to various services, including mental health care, housing, and other benefits. The Coordinator will be responsible for exercising discretion in working with detained and formerly detained clients directly, in a limited capacity. Direct client work will not entail one-on-one therapeutic care, but rather will entail assisting clients in accessing critical social services. This coordination requires a level of maturity and experience working across multiple NIJC legal services projects, but with a particular focus on clients who have been impacted by the immigration detention system. The primary responsibilities in this area will include (1)  serving as the lead in the identification of resources for non-citizens for essential services, such as housing, food, medical and mental health services and working with external partners; (2) developing a release plan for detained individuals for submission to courts or ICE in connection with release applications; (3) leading in the execution of release plans for detained noncitizens, (4)  serving as the external liaison with clients facing prolonged detention with support networks, including therapy, (5) serving as the lead with clinicians to arrange psychological evaluations for clients, and (6) serving as the lead person to make referrals for formerly detained clients for services including housing, health care, and others as appropriate. In all circumstances, the Coordinator will work with the legal services team to identify the most effective and appropriate means of interfacing with the client.

Please note this is not an attorney position, nor is it a clinical position. This position coordinates services for clients in support of NIJC legal advocacy and does not operate in a separate professional capacity.

Travel will be required to carry out the program objectives; provided it is safe to do so. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties And Responsibilities

  • Map social services programs and scope of services for Chicago and the Midwest
  • Lead in the development of external relationships with social services providers to facilitate referrals
  • Serve as the principal person coordinating release options for clients by securing housing and medical care for clients seeking release, and by securing documentation from supporting networks to support release requests.
  • Serve as the main liaison with clients facing prolonged detention to connect them to support services.
  • Serve as the primary liaison with clinicians to arrange for psychological evaluations of detained clients.
  • Serve as the lead in making referrals for formerly detained individuals with respect to housing, health care, transportation, and other services as appropriate.
  • Serve as the principal point person with legal services teams , particularly those projects serving detained and formerly detained clients.

Competencies:

To perform the job successfully, an individual should demonstrate the following competencies:

  • Leadership & Teamwork– Demonstrates leadership a nd autonomy, taking initiative and playing an influential role with respect to this work stream, partnering across NIJC. Collaborates with staff and external partners on all projects.
  • Oral Communication - Speaks clearly and persuasively in positive or negative situations; Listens and seeks clarification; Responds well to questions; Demonstrates group presentation skills; Participates in meetings. Effectively communicates utilizing a variety of technologies such as phone or videophone (i.e. Skype).
  • Written Communication- Writes clearly and informatively; Edits work for spelling and grammar; Varies writing style to meet target audience needs; Presents numerical data effectively; Is able to read and interpret written information; Effectively communicates and manages electronic communication such as email; Is able to use publisher or other tools to format materials persuasively.
  • Organizational Support- Follows policies and procedures; Completes administrative tasks correctly and on time; Supports organization's goals and values; Supports affirmative action and respects diversity.
  • Planning/Organizing- Prioritizes and plans work activities; Uses time efficiently; Plans for additional resources; Sets goals and objectives
  • Adaptability- Adapts to changes in the work environment; Manages competing demands; Changes approach or method to best fit the situation; Is able to deal with frequent change, delays, or unexpected events.
  • Project Management - Develops project plans; Coordinates projects; Communicates changes and progress; Completes projects on time and budget; Manages project team activities.

Qualifications:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience: A college degree required with preferred areas of focus and/or experience in psychology, anthropology, sociology, social work, or related concentrations. Master’s or advanced degrees not required, but individuals with such degrees are encouraged to apply. At least one year of relevant experience is preferred . Work done while the applicant was in school can be counted toward this requirement. This position require s experience with vulnerable populations.
  • Language Skills: Fluency in English is required. Fluency in Spanish is preferred, but applicants who are fluent in another language apart from English are also encouraged to apply .
  • Fluency in Microsoft Office especially Word and Excel; Ability to maintain and organize large quantities of information in an electronic database
  • Attention to detail and accuracy: Ability to competently and effectively communicate orally and in writing for a variety of audiences; Ability to manage multiple tasks efficiently
  • Demonstrated commitment to immigrants’ rights/human rights
  • Volunteer Management: Ability to train interns, to assist with projects, and assign additional tasks on an as- needed basis
  • Client Confidentiality: Ability to maintain client confidentiality, account for client monies, an d avoid conflicts of interest in accordance with organizational policies and ethical standards required of the legal profession and the code of professional responsibility .

Apply for the Immigration Resources Coordinator position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Paralegal- Detention Project

The detention project paralegal is a member of NIJC’s detention project and is primarily responsible for conducting detention intake and providing case support (including research, case review, documentation preparation and other related tasks to support general operations and the work of staff and pro bono attorneys). The paralegal must be fluent in Spanish.  The paralegal is encouraged to seek accreditation with the Department of Justice if appropriate.  

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:  

Detention Intake , Case Screening & Case Support

  • Conduct intake interviews with detained non-citizens and their family members  
  • Present intake interviews for legal assessment  
  • In coordination with the assigned attorney, conduct legal and country-conditions research to assess claims and eligibility for immigration relief  
  • Staff weekly phone intake hotline  
  • Monitor and respond, as needed, to voicemails on the intake line outside of intake hours  
  • Manage and respond to mail and faxes from individuals in ICE custody  
  • Manage and respond to mail from non-citizens in state custody  
  • Respond to referrals from community and legal organizations seeking to refer detained cases . Prepare case acceptance packets and case closing letters for attorneys  
  • Organize and scan closed case files  
  • Prepare immigration cases for filing with attorneys:  
  • Prepare affidavits and indexes; gather supporting documents  
  • Conduct country research and draft country conditions sections of filings  
  • Assist attorneys in preparation of pre-hearing statements  
  • Participate in trainings and review legal materials to remain current on immigration law, policies, and   
  • Any other duties as assigned.  

Qualifications: 

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.  

  • Education and/or Experience:  Bachelor’s 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 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 for the Detention Project Paralegal position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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Paralegal - Goshen Office

The paralegal provides general legal case support through intake, research, case review, documentation preparation and other related tasks to support operations and the work of staff and pro bono attorneys. Individual accountabilities and work volume will be established through the development of annual Success Objectives, within the framework outlined below.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • 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.
  • Conducts educational presentations.
  • 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.
  • Reacts to change productively and handles other essentials duties as assigned.

Qualifications:  

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Education and/or Experience:   Bachelor’s 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:   Proficiency in 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 for the Goshen office Paralegal position on Heartland Alliance's Job Board.

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AmeriCorps VISTA Volunteer Coordinator

Goal of the Project: To ensure that the National Immigrant Justice Center can help  immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers address legal matters impacting their  economic security, health, and safety this VISTA project will increase the capacity of the  organization by enhancing volunteer recruitment and outreach strategies. The VISTA  member will assist in cultivating community partnerships, engaging volunteers, and  developing training and orientation resources to create a sustainable volunteer recruitment and management system.

Objective: NIJC’s Volunteer Coordinator will enhance volunteer management systems. Looking at recruitment, on-boarding, evaluations and structural organization across projects, the VISTA member will design and facilitate systems to enhance organizational capacity.

  • Identify points-of-contact at universities in IL, WI and IN and other key states in the US for recruitment and outreach for fellow, interns / externs, volunteers. Develop a contact list and sustainable system for maintaining contacts updated in data systems.
  • Review NIJC’s current infrastructure for volunteer language services (interpreters and translators). On a quarterly basis, update the contact list of volunteers and languages available to NIJC staff and some pro bono volunteers.
  • Record community engagement events, new relationships developed, and note/share ideas of potential partnerships. Provide notes detailing how future project volunteers can efficiently track and record data
  • In collaboration with NIJC’s intern committee and staff, design and implement a recruitment and outreach strategy, with a yearly calendar, for recruitment new hires, fellows, interns/externs and volunteers and incorporates success indicators and KPI’s for continuous improvement.
  • In collaboration with Pro Bono, Operations and Communications teams, develop comprehensive orientation materials for fellows, externs/interns and volunteers.
  • Design pre and post evaluations for fellows and interns/externs. Generate basic guidance how/when supervisors should employ these evaluations. Monitor completion of the evaluations and produce a year-end report on the feedback provided.
  • Scale up NIJC’s language volunteer opportunity by enhancing mechanisms of communication between staff and volunteers, enhancing outreach materials for potential volunteers, develop a mechanism to track the number of volunteers and languages involved, manage a yearly evaluation of volunteers and the hours volunteered. Identify additional languages for which NIJC staff need language support and identify organizations that provide these languages. 

Apply for the Volunteer Coordinator position on AmeriCorps webpage.

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Internships

NIJC offers internships to law students and undergraduate students to work in a variety of its different legal services programs including legal services. 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. Please see our internship page for more details.

 

 

 

 

Fellowships

NIJC is proud to continue its Schreiber Legal Fellowship Program through the generosity of John and Kathy Schreiber. The two selected fellows will provide legal representation to immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers for two years. NIJC will consider applications from graduating law students or recent graduates who demonstrate a strong commitment to pursuing a long-term career in the immigrant rights movement. For more information on the Schreiber Legal Fellowship and to apply, please visit this page.

NIJC invites rising third-year law students and recent law graduates to join NIJC as a legal fellow for up to two years, beginning in the fall of 2023. NIJC seeks to host fellows through programs including Equal Justice Works, the Skadden Foundation, Soros Fellowships, and other public interest fellowships, including law school funded programs. NIJC will work with candidates to develop proposals for submission, helping tailor proposals to address important immigration rights issues. To apply, please send a resume, letter of interest, law school transcripts, and writing sample to NIJCinternships@heartlandalliance.org.
 

 

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.