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Conservation Law Intern

Job Location

Washington, DC, United States


Type of Job



$15 an hour

Published By

Publisher Name

Published Date

Nov 9, 2021

About the job

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Defenders of Wildlife’s 10-week summer internship program will provide interns with in-depth exposure to Defenders’ conservation work, the opportunity to acquire specific skills needed to pursue their professional goals, the opportunity to engage in hands-on research/projects in their field of study, and the opportunity to build professional networks. The program will also provide students with cross-disciplinary exposure, one-to-one mentor matching, and peer-to-peer support. Defenders strongly encourages students from historically underrepresented and marginalized backgrounds to apply.

As a part of this program, the Conservation Law department offers internships to select law students with a commitment to or demonstrated interest in wildlife conservation law and litigation. This position is designed to provide a wide range of legal, programmatic, and administrative experience relating to conservation issues of national significance. The internship program covers a wide range of environmental issues from endangered species to federal lands management and is a terrific opportunity for law students dedicated to or interested in wildlife conservation law and litigation.

Interns will provide research and writing support for our conservation law projects. A typical project will involve research of a relevant legal issue and the production of a legal memo that analyzes the issue and makes recommendations to our conservation law attorneys.


Education: Currently enrolled in law school.  Courses taken in administrative and/or environmental law may be helpful but are not required.

Experience: Commitment to or demonstrated interest in wildlife conservation, litigation, and public interest environmental work; commitment to or demonstrated interest in broadening the inclusion of multicultural and/or marginalized communities in the conservation movement.


  • Must be eligible to work in the United States without employer sponsorship
  • Must be at least 18 years of age
  • Must be able to commit to the full 10-week term of the program
  • Strong writing, research, and verbal communication skills

Application Materials:

  • CV or resume
  • Cover letter
  • A legal writing sample of no more than ten pages
  • A separate statement of no more than 250 words addressing your contributions to, experiences with, or education about Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice (DEIJ) in the field of environmental law. Defenders’ definitions of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice are as follows:Diversity is the presence of human differences within a group, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, ability and age; and acknowledging and respecting the resulting diversity of ideas, strengths and perspectives that are contributed.
    Equity is the identification and promotion of systems and practices that advance fair and equal treatment, access and opportunity for all, particularly members of underrepresented or marginalized groups. Equitable systems and practices lead to equality.
    Inclusion is the commitment to a safe and respectful environment where people feel welcomed, supported and valued. Differences are welcomed and underrepresented voices are actively sought out to ensure that diverse perspectives are heard and considered.
    Justice is dismantling societal barriers to access, resources and opportunities by connecting conservation and biodiversity issues with the needs and concerns of impacted communities.
  • Example topics include, but are not limited to: (1) contributions you have made to strengthen DEIJ at your law school or in your legal community; or (2) a description of your experiences with or education about DEIJ-related issues and how they have shaped your personal growth and/or your interest in environmental law.

Physical Activities and Demands

  • Constantly remaining in a stationary position, often standing or sitting for prolonged periods
  • Communicating with others to exchange information.
  • Repeating motions that may include the wrists, hands, and/or fingers.

Visit to apply.

All employees are required to satisfactorily perform the essential duties and responsibilities of their positions. The essential duties and responsibilities listed above are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and skills required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of the job.

Defenders requires employees who engage in in-person work activities, including business travel or onsite work, to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.  An applicant (i) who is disabled or pregnant or who has a qualifying medical condition that contraindicates a COVID-19 vaccination or (ii) who objects to being vaccinated on the basis of a sincerely held religious belief, observance or practice may request an exemption from this vaccination policy. This determination will be made on a case-by-case basis and in accordance with applicable law. Any medical information concerning an applicant's disability will be treated as a confidential medical record in compliance with applicable federal, state and local laws.

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