Public Interest Fellowships
The University of Akron School of Law Public Interest Law Program supports and encourages those students looking to gain legal experience in public interest law. Students who have secured a placement with a public interest organization, such as: a court, a State or Federal agency, or a qualifying non-profit entity, are eligible to apply for a fellowship from the Public Interest Law Program.
To be eligible, you must: (1) be engaged in legal work; (2) be supervised by a licensed attorney; and (3) secure a public interest placement prior to submitting an application. To apply, submit a completed Public Interest Fellowship Application describing the essence of your summer program and why you believe the work is important, and include a confirmation letter from your employer organization. Please ask the agency to include what pay, if any, you anticipate receiving from them.
The Margery Malkin Koosed Public Interest Law Fellowship Fund was established in 2012 by Professor Margery Malkin Koosed. It honors the memory of her father, Sanford S. Malkin. The Margery Malkin Koosed Public Interest Law Fellowship Fund is established to provide fellowship support for students at The University of Akron School of Law with an interest in public interest law, especially those who desire to serve as public defenders, offering an opportunity to gain valuable experience.
Student applicants for The Margery Malkin Koosed Public Interest Law Fellowship Award Fund will submit their application in accordance with the procedures established by The University of Akron School of Law’s Public Interest Law Fellowships Program (see above).
The Samuel Reese Willis Public Interest Law Fund supports and encourages those students looking to gain legal experience in public interest law. Students who have secured a placement with a public interest organization in Summit or Stark County, Ohio, such as: a court, a State or Federal agency, or a qualifying non-profit entity, are eligible to apply for a fellowship from the Samuel Reese Willis Public Interest Law Fund.
To be eligible, you must: (1) be engaged in legal work at a qualified employer in Summit or Stark County, Ohio; (2) be supervised by a licensed attorney; and (3) secure a public interest placement prior to submitting an application.
The Akron Bar Foundation has created a fellowship to fund first and second year law students with a stipend while the student(s) is performing a summer clerkship with a not-for-profit, public interest or government position, preferably in Summit County. The ABF Fellowship is available to any University of Akron Law School student completing their first or second year (full-time program) or second and third year (part-time program) curriculum. Recipients must commit to working in the position for at least 25 hours per week for a period of not less than ten (10) weeks. Specific start and end dates and weekly schedules should be arranged directly with your employer. Students must arrange for a placement in a not-for-profit, public interest or government position prior to submitting an application.
To apply, students must submit application to the Career Services. The application must include: (i) a completed and signed Fellowship Program application form; (ii) law and graduate school (if applicable) transcripts (official copy, if possible), honors and awards; (iii) a current resume; (iv) a personal statement; (v) a statement from the employer confirming employment and the anticipated dates of employment; and (vi) such other information as requested. The application also may include letters of recommendation.
Up to five applicants for the ABF Fellowship will be chosen for a personal interview to be conducted by select members of the Akron Bar Foundation. The number of ABF fellowships awarded and the amount awarded will be determined by the Akron Bar Foundation, but the amount of an individual award shall not be less than $2,500 and shall not exceed the sum of $5,000.
The School of Law is accepting applications for the David D. Dowd Sr. Memorial Award. Named in tribute to a distinguished attorney dedicated to public service and created by Judge David D. Dowd, Jr. upon the 25th anniversary of his service in the federal judiciary, the purpose of the Dowd Award is to promote a commitment to public service for all lawyers. Dowd Awards are directed to Akron Law students interested in seeking professional careers in public service following graduation.
To be eligible, you must:
- Secure a placement (see preferences below.)
- Show a commitment to public service.
- Be capable of working 20 hours per week during the summer for minimum of ten weeks in a public service position. Specific start and end dates and weekly schedules should be arranged directly with your employer.
- Be committed to working in a public setting upon graduation.
First priority is given to those who have completed their second year or students who have completed their third year (part-time) by the summer for which funding is requested. Students completing first year (full-time) or second year (part-time) will also be considered.
Placements this summer - in order of preference:
1st Preference: Office of the County Prosecuting Attorney in Stark, Summit, and Wayne Counties; the law departments in the cities of Akron, Canton, Massillon and the public defenders offices in Summit and Stark Counties.
2nd Preference: The United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio and the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Northern District of Ohio.
3rd Preference: Other prosecuting attorney offices in Ohio and other municipal law department offices in the state of Ohio.
4th Preference: Other not already listed public service agencies.
- The student will be expected to work 20 hours per week for not less than 10 weeks.
If you are interested in being considered for this award, applicants shall write a letter of purpose to apply for the award, addressing the topic of public service in the context of his or her goals in the legal profession, both short and long term. The letter should also specify the legal setting in which the student proposes to serve from among those cited above, and be submitted with a resume.