Get a Fellowship

Applications for BPILP fellowships are available online every spring semester. To receive a fellowship, students must already be in the process of securing an internship for the coming summer.

When reviewing fellowship applications, BPILP involvement (the number of hours you contribute to the organization) is taken into consideration for a number of the fellowships (BPILP, Dean’s BPILP, Law Alumni Association BPILP, Garry Graber Fellowship) as well as the Charles E. Mann Buffalo Public Interest Award.

Fellowship Applications will be available soon!

On this page:

Please Note

Failure to fulfill the volunteer time commitment mentioned above will result in a partial or full forfeiture of the fellowship and a check stop on your HUB account.

APPLICATION ELIGIBILITY & REQUIREMENTS

1. ELIGIBILITY

a. Applicants must be a 1L or 2L student at the University at Buffalo School of law.

b. Applicants must be considered to be in ‘good academic standing’ as outlined by the GARP.

2. REQUIREMENTS

a. Applicants must secure (or have secured) a qualifying public interest position for the summer.

i. Public interest organizations may include: local, state, or federal government as long as its goals and the applicant’s project are consistent with working in the public interest; not-for-profit organizations or NGOs (including international); or be working on legal issues at a not-for-profit agency or organization that directly performs public interest endeavors but does not necessarily practice law (for example homeless shelters, health centers, veterans support services, or similar organizations).

ii. The Career Services Office can provide you with information about summer employment in the public interest.

b. If you have yet to secure an offer, but are in the application and interview process for a legal public interest position, you may still apply. Please note that confirmation of a job offer must be provided before the fellowship funds are awarded. If you have yet to secure an offer, please list each position for which you have submitted an application or are being considered, as well as a brief description of each.

c. BPILP will consider funding proposals for other organizations other than those outlined in number 3 which address broad public policy concerns, such as, but not limited to, public health, poverty, civil rights, criminal prosecution and defense, consumer issues, labor, environment, and immigration. Examples include organizations such as the Sierra Club, NOW, NAACP, Public Citizen, individual labor unions, or public interest law firms.

d. BPILP will also consider funding internships with judges if the student can articulate why his/her particular judicial internships serves a public interest.

e. Proposals for employment in a political/government campaign or for a political party will not be considered.

f. The public interest internship must be unpaid.

i. The Buffalo Public Interest Fellowship Program and donor funded public interest and judicial summer fellowship are designed to aid students who are working without pay.

ii. Students who have other funding for their internship may still qualify for fellowships as long as the total amount of their summer funding (UB combined with other funding) must not exceed $5,000.

iii. If the recipient’s total funding exceeds $5,000, the BPILP administrator must be informed of this and the appropriate amount must be returned to UB Foundation.

FUNDING, SELECTION PROCESS, & CRITERION

1. FUNDING

a. The BPILP Fellowship Committee is able to provide funding based on the available school budget and pending the administration’s approval.

i. Charles E. Mann Public Interest Award is stand alone award that is given to the student who receives the highest ranking as determined by the E-Board based on BPILP involvement in the previous academic year. This award is given in addition to a full Buffalo Public Interest Law Program fellowship.

b. The Committee reserves the right to adjust the amount awarded.

2. SELECTION PROCESS

a. Interested parties must complete and submit an application according to the deadlines set forth by the Fellowship Selection Committee. Late applications may be considered if the Committee so decides, with the tardiness of the application considered in the Selection Criteria.

3. CRITERION TAKEN INTO ACCOUNT

a. The applicant’s demonstrated commitment to public service

b. The quality and nature of the applicant’s position

c. The applicant’s plans for future commitment to public service

d. For Buffalo Public Interest Summer Fellowship Awards and Grants, Dean’s BPILP Summer Fellowship Awards, the Charles E. Mann Public Interest Award volunteer hours and service to the BPILP organization are evaluated for selection purposes. The student receiving the highest ranking based on their commitment and service to BPILP and the public interest is eligible for the Mann Award.

POST FUNDING REQUIREMENTS & CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS

1. Students who receive a fellowship are required to sign a contract verifying the following:

a. Minimum Hours of Field Work. Fellows must complete a minimum of 280 hours of public interest field work under the supervision of an approved organization or supervisor.

b. Service to BPILP. Recipients of BPILP, Dean’s BPILP, the Law Alumni Association BPILP, and Charles E. Mann Public Interest Award are required to complete a minimum number of service hours to the organization’s activities. The number of hours is approximately 10-15 and varies based on the amount of the award.

c. Supervisor Verification. Commitment to turn in verification of hours worked halfway through and at the completion of the fellowship from the fellow’s employer. The final verification is due by August 21, 2020.

d. Donor thank you and summaries. Commitment to send a personal thank you letter to the donor (s) and summary of the fellowship work describing their summer work by August 21, 2020. (only for applicable awards) as well as attendance at a donor meet and greet/thank you/ or other designated event in the subsequent academic year.

e. Students who receive the Law Alumni Association Fellowship must attend a Law Alumni Association meeting in the fall of 2020 where he/she will talk about his/her experience and how he/she benefitted from the summer placement.

f. Students who receive the Dean’s Advisory Council Fellowship must attend a DAC meeting in the fall of 2020 where he/she will talk about his/her experience and how he/she benefitted from the summer placement.

2. Students who fail to return to the University at Buffalo School of Law or affiliated dual degree program will be required to repay up to but not exceeding 1/3 of the total amount of the fellowship award they receive.