Externs, Interns, and Fellows


IRAP is currently accepting applications for the following positions. Please review each description for specific details on how to apply. Full-time employment positions can be found on this page. Independent contractor & consulting positions can be found on this page.

Internship, Policy/Communications

This posting is viewable by itself at this link.

About IRAP
The International Refugee Assistance Project (“IRAP”) is a dynamic and growing legal, policy, and advocacy organization that works to develop and enforce a system of legal and human rights for refugees and displaced people around the world. We are the leading organization that provides free and comprehensive legal services to people we serve through registration, protection, and resettlement processes.

IRAP operates offices in the U.S. (New York City), Jordan (Amman), and Lebanon (Beirut). Our legal services are supplemented by a corps of pro bono lawyers from leading U.S. and international law firms and multi-national corporations, and law students who have created IRAP chapters across the United States and Canada. Through this work, we aim to assist refugees and other displaced people to find safe passage and to transform the landscape of refugee rights in the U.S. and internationally. We are a nimble organization staffed by an innovative and collaborative team that is committed to high standards of quality and close partnerships with our clients, peers, and colleagues.

IRAP has over 50 full-time staff, the majority of whom are based in the New York City office, with others working in field offices in Jordan and Lebanon or remotely. IRAP’s Policy and Communications Department is one of five departments (in conjunction with Legal, Litigation, Development, and Operations) and currently comprised of three policy staff and two communications staff working out of the New York City office and remotely. IRAP’s Policy Department utilizes lessons learned in direct legal services and works with creative, non-partisan coalitions to advocate for systemic changes that benefit broader refugee and displaced people.

Opportunity
IRAP is seeking a part-time academic-year intern to support the Policy and Communications Department in our New York City office. Interns may also have the opportunity to work with other departments at IRAP. This is an exciting opportunity to be part of a growing organization that has an impact on the lives of refugees and displaced people. Interns will gain experience in the fields of advocacy and communications for a human rights-focused legal organization.

Responsibilities

  • Conducting research into refugee and immigration policy initiatives, legislation, other public affairs, and on other projects, as assigned.
  • Drafting and editing written content for the organization’s website, social media outlets, mailings, and other materials.
  • Developing and designing social media graphics and other visual content, in cooperation with the Communications Director and Digital Communications Coordinator.
  • Organizing and compiling data, images, and other communications materials in the contact and communications databases.
  • Conducting intake interviews with potential clients, if needed.
  • Working on individual projects as assigned.

Experience and Qualifications

  • At least two years of undergraduate class work or equivalent work experience.
  • Interest in refugee and human rights and in U.S. politics.
  • Must be highly organized and motivated, able to multitask, and have excellent time management skills.
  • Strong research, writing, and analytical skills.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Sensitivity to client empowerment and to working with clients of all backgrounds, including LGBTI clients, survivors of trauma, and other vulnerable populations.
  • Ability to be flexible in a fast-paced and high-pressure work environment.
  • Fluency in oral and written English; ability to speak other languages is a plus.
  • Microsoft Suite required; knowledge of InDesign, WordPress, and/or MailChimp a plus.
  • Interns must be at least 18 years old.

Duration
This is a part-time position of 10-15 hours per week, with flexible scheduling based on an intern’s course schedule. Ideally an intern would be available through the September to May academic year, exclusive of academic calendar breaks, but semester-long interns may be considered. Please note in your cover letter whether you are applying for a semester-long or academic year-long internship.

Location
The candidate will work in IRAP’s U.S. office in New York City.

Compensation/Credit
Salary is $15 per hour, with a maximum of 15 hours per week. IRAP is also committed to working with a successful candidate on funding or school credit opportunities.

Application Procedure
Please submit a cover letter, resume, short writing sample (3-5 pages), and a list of three references at this link. Please note in your cover letter whether you are applying for a semester-long or academic year-long internship. Review of applications will start on July 8 and will continue on a rolling basis until a hire is made.

IRAP believes that diversity is critical to fostering a strong workplace and serving our clients well. We strongly encourage applications from people with lived experiences in the communities that we serve, members of other marginalized communities, and individuals underrepresented in the legal profession.

Externship, Litigation

Opportunity

IRAP’s litigation department seeks to sponsor law students who are participating in formal, full-time externship programs through their law schools to extern at IRAP for a minimum of one semester in our New York City office. Supplementary financial aid may be available. Legal externs will primarily be supervised by attorneys within IRAP’s litigation department. Externs may have the opportunity to collaborate with other departments including Policy, Communications, and Legal (direct services). This is an exciting opportunity to be part of a growing organization that makes an important impact on the lives of refugees.

IRAP’s litigation department is based in New York. IRAP litigates systemic advocacy cases in federal court on behalf of refugees and others in humanitarian need.  For the list of cases that IRAP is involved in, please see: https://refugeerights.org/litigation/.

Possible Responsibilities

IRAP is willing to discuss adapting responsibilities to fit the requirements of specific externship programs

  • Writing factual and legal research memos in support of ongoing or planned litigation.
  • Communicating with and interviewing clients and affected communities.
  • Assisting with litigation, including by conducting research, drafting affidavits, and cite-checking and finalizing briefs and other filings.
  • Preparing know-your-rights materials and participating in public education efforts.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree and pursuing an advanced degree in law.
  • Interest in complex federal litigation, immigration law, and refugee processing
  • Strong research, writing, and analytical skills.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills, particularly in working with diverse and at-risk populations.
  • Fluency in oral and written English; ability to speak other languages is a plus.
  • Microsoft Suite required, fluency in Adobe Acrobat a plus.

IRAP welcomes applications from diverse candidates. This is an unpaid externship, although need-based supplementary financial aid may be available.

Application Instructions

Please submit a cover letter, resume, short writing sample (5-10 pages), a description of your school’s externship program and requirements, and a list of three references using the application form available here. In your cover letter, please confirm that you are seeking a placement for a full-time externship program offered through your law school.  We will review applications on a rolling basis.

Externship (Academic year), Direct Legal Services

A webpage containing only this specific position is here.

Opportunity

IRAP seeks to sponsor law students who are participating in formal externship programs through their law schools to extern at IRAP for a minimum of three months in our New York City office. IRAP will consider full-time or part-time externships. Supplementary financial aid may be available. Legal externs will primarily be supervised by attorneys within IRAP’s Legal department, which provides direct legal assistance to refugees and visa applicants located overseas. Externs may have the opportunity to collaborate with multiple other departments including Policy, Communications, and Operations. This is an exciting opportunity to be part of a growing agency that makes an important impact on the lives of refugees.

Possible Responsibilities:

IRAP is willing to discuss adapting responsibilities to fit the requirements of specific externship programs.

  • Conducting intake interviews with refugees to determine needs and refugee claims, and drafting intake reports as part of IRAP’s case screening process
  • Drafting legal briefs and memos in support of at-risk and vulnerable refugee cases submitted to the U.S. government or the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
  • Preparing affidavits and other evidence to reinforce claims
  • Researching refugee law or human rights country conditions
  • Researching refugee sponsorship and related programs as part of IRAP’s Alternative Pathways work
  • Other duties as assigned

Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree and pursuing an advanced degree in law
  • Interest in refugee law and/or processing, human rights, and international law
  • Must be highly organized and motivated, able to multi-task, and have excellent time management skills
  • Strong research, writing, and analytical skills
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills
  • Comfortable working with diverse populations
  • Ability to be flexible in a fast-paced and high-pressure work environment
  • Fluency in oral and written English; ability to speak other languages is a plus
  • Microsoft Suite required

IRAP welcomes applications from diverse candidates. This is an unpaid externship, although need-based supplementary financial aid may be available.

Application Instructions

Please submit a cover letter, resume, short writing sample (3-5 pages), and a list of three references using the application form available here. We will review applications on a rolling basis.

Externally-Funded Policy Fellowship – New York

About IRAP

The International Refugee Assistance Project (“IRAP”) is the first organization to provide free and comprehensive legal representation to refugees through the registration, protection, and resettlement processes. We are a dynamic and growing legal, policy, and advocacy organization that works to develop and enforce a system of legal and human rights for refugees and displaced persons around the world.  IRAP operates offices in New York, Jordan, and Lebanon.

IRAP’s policy department is based in New York. IRAP’s policy department advocates for improving refugee policy with international and federal decision-makers. Since 2008, IRAP’s advocacy has led to the enactment of 9 provisions in federal law and many administrative changes.

IRAP believes in action, accountability, innovation, and candor. We are nimble, collaborative, and nonpartisan, and believe in the power of individuals to change their own circumstances. IRAP was founded in 2008 by a group of law students with a vision to change the status quo of global refugee processing in order to assist the most vulnerable refugees.

Opportunity

IRAP’s policy department seeks to sponsor individuals who have an undergraduate, public policy or public affairs, and who have external fellowship funding (from a school, foundation, or otherwise) to work at IRAP for a minimum of three months (but six months or longer preferred) in our New York City office.

Fellows will be supervised by attorneys in the policy department, but may have opportunities to collaborate with other departments including legal, litigation, and communications. This is an exciting opportunity to be part of a growing organization that makes an important impact on the lives of refugees.

Please confirm in your cover letter that you are applying for the externally-funded fellowship position with IRAP and identify the external funding source(s) that you have applied for or have received. We are unable to respond to any applications submitted that do not contain this information.

Possible Responsibilities

IRAP is willing to discuss adapting responsibilities to fit the interests of applicants or the requirements of specific fellowship programs

  • Conducting research in support of ongoing or planned advocacy initiatives, including legislation and regulation.
  • Preparing memoranda, advocacy reports, one-pagers, and other advocacy materials.
  • Drafting press statements and talking points in response to policy related news.
  • Assisting with client casework, including client intake interviews.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Qualifications

  • B.A., M.P.A., or M.P.P degree (undergraduate or graduate degree in one of these areas) at the time of starting the fellowship (job description will be tailored according to educational level and other experience)
  • Interest in local, federal, or international advocacy
  • Strong research, writing, and analytical skills
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills
  • Comfortable working with diverse and at-risk populations
  • Must be highly organized and motivated, be able to multitask, and have excellent time management skills
  • Fluency in oral and written English; ability to speak other languages is a plus
  • Competency with Microsoft Suite required

IRAP welcomes applications from diverse candidates.

Application Instructions

Please submit a cover letter, resume, short writing sample (~10 pages), and a list of three references using the application form available online. Please also note your potential availability. We will review applications on a rolling basis.

Please confirm in your cover letter that you are applying for the externally-funded fellowship position with IRAP and identify the external funding source(s) that you have applied for or have received. We are unable to respond to any applications submitted that do not contain this information