07/23/2021 - EELP News

NRDC Fellowship for HLS Student or Recent Graduate-Deadline Extended!

San Francisco, CA, Santa Monica, CA, New York, NY,
Chicago, IL, or Washington, DC

History and Purposes

The Beagle/HLS Fellowship at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) provides graduating HLS students and recent alumni with a two-year funded litigation position at NRDC. The Fellowship was established by a generous gift to Harvard Law School by the Beagle Foundation that was created by Joy Covey ’89. The purposes of the Fellowship are to create a two-year job at NRDC for a recent HLS graduate (the “Fellow”); to provide training and supervision for the Fellow; to enhance the Fellow’s lawyering/litigation skills; and to promote the Fellow’s interest in pursuing a career in nonprofit litigation and environmental law.

Beagle/HLS Fellowship at NRDC Guidelines

The Beagle/HLS Fellowship will be awarded to a graduating Harvard Law School student, judicial clerk, or recent alumni (up to three years out of law school). Applicants must be available to start work the fall following their application.

Selection Criteria
The Fellow will be selected by NRDC and an HLS Committee. NRDC and the Committee seek applicants who have demonstrated an interest in, and commitment to, public interest law, and who demonstrate promise for an outstanding career in nonprofit environmental law. This interest and commitment may be demonstrated through prior public service experience, personal essays, recommendations, extracurricular activities, law school course work, academic achievements, and current work plans. In assessing candidates, NRDC and the Committee also look for strong legal writing and analytical skills; strong oral and written communication skills; experience working effectively as part of a team; and a demonstrated competency working with people of different social identities than their own (including race, gender, sexual orientation, age, class, and disability).

NRDC is committed to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion, both in its work and in the workplace. NRDC believes that celebrating and actively welcoming a diversity of voices and perspectives is essential to solving the planet’s most pressing environmental problems, and encourages applications from candidates whose identities have been historically underrepresented in the environmental movement. NRDC is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate in hiring or employment on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, sexual orientation, national origin, citizenship, age, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law. Pursuant to the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance, NRDC will consider for employment qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records.

Applicants must be admitted to the Bar of the jurisdiction where they are placed, or be willing to complete the admission requirements before or upon the start of the position.

Position Description

The Fellow will join NRDC’s Litigation Team, a group of approximately 30 lawyers and 8 paralegals and legal or operations assistants who litigate across a broad range of environmental and public health issues and in collaboration with and on behalf of communities most impacted by environmental injustices (including Black, indigenous, and people of color, and low-income and rural communities).

In recent years, the Litigation Team has filed lawsuits resisting the Trump Administration’s efforts to dismantle environmental protections, including cases defending national monuments, challenging the suspension of clean water safeguards, opposing offshore drilling and seismic exploration, and protecting energy efficiency standards. We also have a growing docket of environmental enforcement cases against government and private party polluters. This has recently included cases to protect the people of Newark, New Jersey and Flint, Michigan, from lead in drinking water; to remediate toxic pollution in the Penobscot River in Maine; to abate mold in New York City public housing for residents with asthma; and to halt air pollution from a coal-fired power plant in Illinois.

The Fellow’s responsibilities may include:

  • Collaborating with a team of other lawyers and paralegals on legal research and factual investigations;
  • Writing briefs, motions, and memoranda;
  • Presenting oral arguments and participating in status conferences and hearings;
  • Preparing for and taking depositions;
  • Communicating with opposing counsel, clients, and partner organizations; and
  • Engaging in discovery and conducting record and document review.

The Beagle Fellow for 2022-2024 will be placed in NRDC’s San Francisco, Santa Monica, New York, Chicago, or Washington, DC office. NRDC will try to honor the Fellow’s preference as to placement.

The Fellow’s compensation will be equivalent to the starting salary for a new attorney or litigation fellow at NRDC, according to the NRDC scale. For 2022-2024, salary will likely be in the range of $65,000-$83,500, depending upon experience. NRDC also provides the Fellow with excellent medical and other benefits, equivalent to those provided to other NRDC employees.

Application Materials and Procedures

All applications must include:

  • A cover letter, which should include a statement about which NRDC office the applicant would prefer to work in and which office(s) the applicant would consider working in
  • Resume
  • Law school transcript
  • Writing sample
  • Two letters of recommendation, preferably including one from an HLS faculty member, and the name of a third reference
  • A personal essay (no more than 500 words)

Applications should be received by the Environmental Law Program, addressed to May Huang, by October 15, 2021.

Selected applicants will be invited to interview with NRDC and must participate in the interview to be further considered for the Fellowship.

Applications, questions, and correspondence should be sent to:

May Huang at [email protected]

Interview Process and Award Decisions

First-round interviews will be conducted in October 2021. Applicants will be notified about the outcome of the selection process by December 2021.

Each Fellow’s salary will be treated as eligible for the Low Income Protection Program (HLS’s loan repayment program).