Georgia Justice Project has earned a reputation as a great place to spend a semester or a summer during college or graduate school learning and serving others. We offer three tracks of internships — (1) law student internships for law school students throughout the year, (2) social work internships for BSW and MSW students throughout the school year and (3) undergraduate internships in the summer. All internships are unpaid. Through participation in our internship programs, students gain first-hand experience with the realities facing our clients—the indigent, criminally accused and their families. No matter the track, all Georgia Justice Project interns participate in weekly reflections, group readings, immersion learning day trips and other group activities. They plan and participate in client events and service projects. No day is the same and all days are full.
GJP staff attorneys, social workers, community supporters and partners all share a deep commitment to creating, developing and implementing sustainable client programs and policies which offer real solutions to the needs of our clients. We invite students who are interested in criminal justice and who share our commitment to the poor to apply.
GJP Legal Internship
GJP interns may assist with one or all three facets of legal work at GJP depending on their interest and our current needs: (1) reentry legal services (2) policy advocacy; and (3) criminal defense.
- Criminal Defense: GJP represents indigent criminal defendants in municipal, state, and superior court (felonies and misdemeanors). Students assist with all aspects of a case. During the summer, students interview potential clients, gather information from court and police personnel, visit crime scenes, interview witnesses, participate in negotiations with prosecutors, perform legal research, draft and file motions, and observe court proceedings.
- Policy Advocacy: GJP’s policy work aims to reduce the legal barriers faced by those with a criminal record. GJP has established itself as a subject-matter expert with legislators by providing factual data and first-hand testimony about the impact of Georgia’s laws on people with a criminal record. GJP’s current legislative priority is providing a mechanism to restrict (expunge) convictions; as the law stands now, only a very limited category of convictions are eligible for possible restriction. Students will assist with research, drafting materials, and outreach.
- Barriers to Reentry: GJP assists clients whose criminal record acts as a barrier to opportunities, such as employment and housing. We file applications for restriction (expungement) of criminal records and file related motions and petitions, we help remove barriers to driver’s licenses, and we assist with child support modifications. Work will include correcting clients’ criminal history reports, drafting and arguing court motions, and applying for pardons. Students will also assist with legal research and writing needs related to appeals and other criminal records issues. Students will assist with our collaboration with a new and innovative reentry prison in Atlanta to remove barriers for the men who are about to be released from the facility.
- GJP will consider both current 1Ls and 2Ls
- An interest in the criminal justice system and racial and social justice
- Strong writing and research skills
- Organized and prepared to work in a collaborative and team-driven work environment
We accept applications for summer interns, as well as fall/spring externs. Although our law school interns are not paid, most secure funding through other sources. Spaces for the legal track are extremely competitive and are limited. Serious candidates are strongly encouraged to apply early.
GJP Social Work Internship
Our social work interns come to us from CSWE-accredited programs during the school year. Both BSW and MSW students are considered. Currently, we are working with students from Clark Atlanta University and Georgia State University. Interested BSW/MSW students should contact their field education office for placement information.
GJP Undergraduate Summer Internship
Our undergraduate summer interns are immersed in the day-to-day work of our social services and operations team during their six to eight-week internship. They experience the nuts and bolts of nonprofit operations, client intake procedures, program development and implementation, employment search and support services, jail visits, event planning and logistics, marketing and communications and a host of related activities. The summer culminates with the planning and execution of our annual Back to School event for our client families (over 200 youth served).