Harvard Law School today announced that the Ford Foundation has committed to fund a new initiative administered by the Bernard Koteen Office of Public Interest Advising, enabling 25 HLS students to work in the field of public interest law in summer 2013.

Open to current 1L and 2L students, the inaugural Ford Foundation Law School Public Interest Fellowship Program will provide up to 100 fellowships in its inaugural year. The program will connect accomplished law students to substantive, 10-week placements with the foundation’s grantee organizations around the world, working to improve the lives of others through legal analysis, litigation and public policy advocacy.

Said HLS Dean Martha Minow: “At a time when fellowships and other resources for supporting public interest legal work are under greater pressure than ever, the Ford Foundation has stepped in and provided this superb support for law students here and elsewhere and, just as importantly, to the people they will serve through these fellowships. We are immensely grateful for this new support, and we look forward to terrific accomplishments, service and collaboration with our grantee partners.”

Those selected for the fellowship will receive $15,000; the first class of students will begin their fellowships in the summer of 2013.  Working closely with lawyers and advocates, the students will be exposed to a variety of diverse settings and gain insight into social justice issues.

A full list of the grantee organizations and more information is available here. The fellowship program will be administered at HLS by OPIA Associate Director Lisa D. Williams.

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