WhoAliza Shatzman, President and Founder, The Legal Accountability Project

Aliza Shatzman is the President and Founder of The Legal Accountability Project (LAP), a nonprofit aimed at ensuring that law clerks have positive clerkship experiences, while extending support and resources to those who do not. Aliza earned her BA from Williams College in 2013 and her JD from Washington University in St. Louis School of Law in 2019. Aliza clerked in D.C. Superior Court during the 2019-2020 term.

Aliza writes and speaks regularly about judicial accountability, clerkships, and diversity in the courts. She has been published in numerous forums, including the Columbia Law Review, Harvard Journal on Legislation, UCLA Journal of Gender & Law, Yale Law & Policy Review, NYU Journal of Legislation & Public Policy, Administrative Law Review, Above the Law, Law360, Slate, Ms. Magazine, and Balls & Strikes. You may have encountered Aliza on campus in October 2022, when she visited HLS for an event with the Women’s Law Association and HJOL entitled “Fixing Our Clerkship System.”

The Legal Accountability Project (LAP) is a nonprofit aimed at increasing transparency, diversity, and accountability in judicial clerkships, the legal profession, and the judiciary through advocacy, public education, and innovative legal technology. LAP is the resource Aliza wishes existed when she was a law student applying for clerkships; a law clerk experiencing mistreatment and unsure where to go for help; and a former clerk engaging in the formal judicial complaint process.

LAP’s major initiative this year is a Centralized Clerkships Database, where law clerk alumni from across the country can submit post-clerkship surveys about judges as managers and clerkship experiences, and law students from participating law schools can read all the survey responses, in order to identify judges who will create positive work environments and avoid judges who mistreat their clerks. The Database democratizes information and replaces the “whisper networks” which are currently one of the only ways for prospective clerks to obtain information about judges. This initiative ensures that law students have as much information about as many judges as possible, before making important career decisions, considering the outsized influence of a clerkship on a new attorney’s future career success. This initiative also empowers more diverse students to pursue judicial clerkships, because historically marginalized groups disproportionately lack access to the formal networks and information channels that help some of their peers obtain clerkships.

LAP also works on several initiatives, including educational programming, an employment attorney database to connect law clerks seeking judicial accountability with attorneys who can help, a workplace culture assessment of the federal and state judiciaries, and robust writing and research projects. LAP engages in limited legislative advocacy.

Where: Located in Washington, DC, but internship will be remote.

What: Interns: We seek entrepreneurial, innovative, startup-inclined law students to work with us in part-time in fall 2023. Interns will assist with the following areas: law/policy; nonprofit administration; legal technology; and development. LAP considers interns to be valuable team members, and the difficulty of assignments will increase with experience level.

Aliza wears all the hats as an entrepreneur and startup founder, and LAP’s interns do, too. One of the most important things LAP’s interns will learn is what entrepreneurship looks like – the day-to-day of launching and leading a startup. 

The ideal candidate is a motivated, reliable self-starter. We are a mission-driven startup, so flexibility and the ability to pivot and prioritize assignments are necessary. Strong writing, legal research, and communication skills, as well as attention to detail, are required.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS:  Resume, cover letter, writing sample, and list of 3 references. Please send materials to Aliza Shatzman at Aliza.Shatzman@legalaccountabilityproject.org. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.  

Independent Clinical Next Steps: 

In order to earn clinical credits selected students must complete the online independent clinical application which is available here: https://hls.harvard.edu/clinics/independent-clinical/#how-to-apply.  

Students will earn 3 fall clinical credits (12 hours/week).

Please note that independent clinical projects are open to 2L and 3L students.  

J.D students in active F-1 student status cannot participate in Domestic Independent Clinicals because these opportunities are not eligible for CPT authorization.

Questions about the Independent Clinical application process may be directed to clinical@law.harvard.edu.