Funding for Summer Public Interest/Public Service Positions

If you are networking or applying for summer jobs, you will find that most public interest/public service positions are either unpaid or extremely low paid. Please keep in mind that the Law School provides limited funding for these types of positions through the Summer Public Service Fellowship (SPSF) program. The majority of the fellowships will be funded in conjunction with the federal work-study program, and will be in the amount of $2,500, depending on the number of applicants and the amount of available funds.

To be eligible for consideration for an SPSF, a job must be:

• With a non-profit organization or a government agency;

* Legal in nature;

• One that allows you to work a minimum of 10 weeks

AND a total of at least 400 hours over the summer;

• One that provides a licensed attorney to supervise you;


• NOT one for which you COULD receive academic credit

(even if you volunteer without receiving academic credit).

This final criterion means that under no circumstances will any applicant receive SPSF funding for work done through a Law School clinical/externship program (e.g., Remington Center or EJI clinical programs) or other Law School for-credit academic program during the summer. This includes clinical/externship programs for which students receive credit but no stipend (e.g., Center for Patient Partnerships, Judicial Intern Clinical Program, Wisconsin Department of Justice Externship Program). If you elect to volunteer for a position which you could take for academic credit as part of a Law School externship program, you are also ineligible to apply for a SPSF. This includes volunteering for the Wisconsin Department of Justice and, if you are a 2L, volunteering with the State Public Defender’s Office or any county prosecuting attorney’s office.

Any returning, enrolled University of Wisconsin Law School student may apply for an SPSF. This includes 1Ls, 2Ls, and any joint-degree students who will not have graduated from the law school prior to completing work at the funded position.

Applications for the SPSF will be available in the Career Services Office in late January. If you have any questions about the SPSF, please contact Kristin Davis at

Other sources of funding for summer public interest/public services positions can be found at:


Submitted by Jane Heymann, Assistant Dean for Career Services on January 13, 2011

This article appears in the categories: Announcements, Career Services & Student Job Postings

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