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CHHIRJ x Mayer Brown Independent Clinical – Spring 2023

The Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice (CHHIRJ) at Harvard Law School is working with Mayer Brown to offer legal externships associated with the firm’s Project Equity initiative that includes pro bono legal work focused on advancing racial and social justice in a variety of key areas of life, including voting, criminal justice, and housing. This arrangement reflects CHHIRJ’s commitment to offering students opportunities to build knowledge of and experience legal work happening at the contemporary frontiers of racial and social justice.

In Spring 2023, we are happy to offer students an opportunity to work remotely with Mayer Brown on ongoing racial justice cases. The most recent semesters have focused on voting rights cases, and this litigation has been challenging laws enacted and actions taken to make it harder for people of color to vote in these jurisdictions. Students would be involved in work that could include information and document review, research on legal standards and possible legal motions, and deposition preparation and observation. Students would work closely with Mayer Brown attorneys on one or more cases throughout the semester and would complete weekly journals reflecting on how their experiences in the externship are shaping their ideas about their experiences in law school, what it means to be lawyer, and their potential legal careers and an original 15-page research paper on a topic related to race and justice, voting rights, and/or access to justice. Students will receive feedback at every stage of the paper process, from topic selection to final manuscript, over the course of the semester.

If selected for an externship, students may earn academic credit through the HLS independent clinical program. This opportunity is available as a 2-credit (8 hours/week, 96 hours/semester) or 3-credit (12 hours/week, 144 hours/semester) option. Accepted students will need to complete the Independent Clinical Application no later than Friday, January 20, 2023 (, and CHHIRJ will provide assistance with completing the application by the deadline. Any general questions regarding the independent clinical program may be directed to Liz Solar at HLS directs the administration and granting of academic credit, and this opportunity does not involve employment with or compensation from Mayer Brown. To apply, students should submit a (1) cover letter explaining their interest in working on racial justice issues, including but not limited to voting rights issues, (2) resume, and (3) unofficial transcript no later than Wednesday, January 4, 2023 (midnight ET). Application materials should be sent to CHHIRJ Managing Director Destiny Peery ( Offers will made no later than Tuesday, January 17, 2023. We anticipate accepting at least 2 – 3 students for Spring 2023.