2019-2021 Aryeh Neier Fellowship

Unique opportunity to work with both the ACLU and Human Rights Watch! Details below.

2019-2021 Aryeh Neier Fellowship

Office: Legal Fellowships | Location: New York

The American Civil Liberties Union Foundation (ACLU) and Human Rights Watch (HRW) invite applications for the Aryeh Neier Fellowship. The fellow will work with both organizations on joint initiatives to strengthen respect for human rights in the United States.

For nearly 100 years, the ACLU has been our nation’s guardian of liberty, working in courts, legislatures, and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States. Whether it’s ending mass incarceration, achieving full equality for the LGBT community, advancing racial justice, establishing new privacy protections for our digital age, or preserving the right to vote or the right to have an abortion, the ACLU takes up the toughest civil liberties and civil rights cases and issues to defend all people from government abuse and overreach. With more than one million members, activists, and supporters, the ACLU is a nationwide organization that fights tirelessly in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, D.C., for the principle that every individual’s rights must be protected equally under the law, regardless of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, national origin, record of arrest or conviction.

Human Rights Watch is an international human rights monitoring and advocacy organization known for its in-depth investigations, its incisive and timely reporting, its innovative and high-profile advocacy campaigns, and its success in changing the human rights-related policies and practices of influential governments and international institutions.

Human Rights Watch and the ACLU created the fellowship in 2002 with generous funding from the Open Society Institute to honor the legacy of Aryeh Neier. As executive director of the ACLU and then of Human Rights Watch, Aryeh Neier helped develop both organizations into powerful forces for justice and human rights.

A special committee from both organizations will select the fellow, who will begin the two-year fellowship in September 2019. They will most likely be placed in the New York City offices of Human Rights Watch and the ACLU, spending a year at each; however, the fellow should be open to placement in the organizations’ offices in other locations in the US.


  1. Monitor human rights developments;
  2. Conduct field research in the United States;
  3. Draft reports on human rights conditions;
  4. Engage in advocacy aimed at publicizing and curtailing human rights violations;
  5. Assist with the development of litigation strategies; and
  6. Carry out other tasks as may be required.


Education: Candidates must hold a J.D. from a US law school or have a J.D. granted by June 2019.

Experience : Academic or work experience related to some aspect of the protection of human rights and civil liberties in the United States.

Related Skills and Knowledge

  1. Take and/or pass the bar exam prior to commencing the fellowship in September 2019
  2. Eligibility to practice law in the US during the second year of the fellowship
  3. Exceptional analytical skills, and an ability to write and speak clearly and persuasively
  4. Self-motivation with the ability to take initiative and follow through on projects to completion
  5. Ability to work independently as well as within a team
  6. Proficiency in one language in addition to English is preferred
  7. A demonstrated commitment to human rights and justice


The fellow will receive $60,000 in the first year, with a salary increase in the second year.

How to Apply

Please apply immediately or by 11:59 PM ET on October 5, 2018 by visiting our online job portal at: https://bit.ly/2Pho8NB& and attaching a resume, letter of interest, and a brief writing sample (unedited by others), preferably altogether as one PDF file. No calls or email inquiries, please. Only complete applications will be reviewed. Due to the large number of applications only shortlisted candidates will be contacted further.

Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted to submit the following: two letters of recommendation and an official law or graduate school transcript.

Applicants must be available for interviews in New York from late November to mid-December 2018.

Please direct inquiries, including technical difficulties with your application submission, to fellowship@hrw.org. Due to the large response, application submissions via email will not be accepted and inquiries regarding the status of applications will go unanswered.

This job description provides a general but not comprehensive list of the essential responsibilities and qualifications required. It does not represent a contract of employment. The ACLU/HRW reserves the right to change the job description and/or posting at any time without advance notice


Hello, My name is Carol Nansubuga Mukalazi, am a paralegal working with the public interest law clinic in Makerere university school of law in Uganda. My question is how possible is it for me to get job opportunities abroad as a paralegal or how could i be able to get funding from this fellowship or any other that can be recommended by you for our starting NGO. The registration process is still underway as we are still trying to put funds together and secure a licence.we are a group of five young ladies and a gentleman and we deemed it fit to start our own NGO. The initiative was born out of the dire need for our community to access legal aid services when needed and also provide education for the less privileged. The concept note can be shared and other supporting documents for perusal. Looking forward for a positive reply. Thanks, Carol.

Hi @Carolnansubuga, nice to hear from you and about the work you are doing in Uganda. The Aryeh Neier fellowship is only open to those that have a J.D. from a US law school, unfortunately. But, in other cases where the candidate pool is international, it is a good idea to contact the organization directly and ask about financial support. This website does provide some fellowship and grant opportunities for organizations and individuals based in Uganda. It could be a good starting place to connect with international organizations and/or to work abroad. Otherwise, once your registration is complete, this is a good website to look for funding opportunities. I hope this helps and good luck!

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