OPBP Internship Programme

Photo credit: Laura Hilly

Photo credit: Laura Hilly

About the OPBP Internship Programme

Launched in the 2010-11 academic year, the Internship Programme – underpinned by our three internship schemes – is an integral part of OPBP’s work. Its purpose is to assist Oxford graduate students to undertake unpaid or poorly paid internships at public interest organisations. Through the Internship Programme, OPBP:

  • encourages student interest and involvement in pro bono and public interest law;
  • enables students to gain practical experience in these areas where, without financial assistance, they would be unable to do so;
  • puts world-class legal skills at the disposal of organisations working pro bono in the public interest; and
  • strengthens OPBP’s relationships with its partners.

Over the past few years, we have awarded over £11,000 in grants from the Internship Fund and have assisted more than 20 students to undertake internships in eight different countries. OPBP’s internship partners have included organisations such as Human Rights Watch in the U.S., the Centre for Policy Alternatives in Sri Lanka, StepChange Debt Charity in the U.K., the Legal Resources Centre in South Africa, and the International Labour Organisation in Switzerland.

Click on the links to read more about the experiences of our 20122013 and 2014 interns, or scroll down for more information about applying to the Internship Fund and hosting an OPBP intern.

2018 Internship Programme

This year we have teamed up with the Bonavero Institute who are administrating OPBP’s internships. They also offer several Student Fellowship Opportunities, which you can view here.

1. OPBP Internship Fund: Women’s Legal Centre (Cape Town) and Centre on the Death Penalty, National Law University (Delhi)

The OPBP Internship Fund’s purpose is to assist Oxford graduate students to undertake unpaid internships at public interest organisations. In 2018, we are offering summer internships at two partner organisations, the Women’s Legal Centre in Cape Town and the Centre on the Death Penalty in Delhi.

Eligibility

The internships are open to students currently pursuing a research degree or a taught graduate course in the Law Faculty (BCL/MJur/MSc/MSt/MPhil/DPhil).

Applicants may be about to complete their graduate degrees in Oxford or, in appropriate cases and after consulting their supervisor, may be seeking to intermit their studies in order to undertake the internship.

Additionally, applicants may apply for other internships within the Faculty of Law. Where applications are made for than one fellowship, applicants should indicate their order of preference with regard to the different fellowships.

Applicants should demonstrate from their qualifications, especially their studies in Oxford, that they have sufficient knowledge of human rights law to make an effective contribution. Usually, applicants will have taken a course related to human rights law in an Oxford taught programme or will have engaged in research in an aspect of human rights law as part of their studies in Oxford.

Selection Criteria

The following selection criteria will be used:

  1. Suitability of the applicant to the internship to be undertaken, with regard to background and experience;
  2. Benefit to the applicant’s professional development and a possible future career in public interest law by undertaking the internship;
  3. Ability of the applicant to demonstrate commitment to public interest legal work, including past participation in OPBP projects and/or the OPBP Executive Committee or other public interest work

 

Application Process

If you wish to apply for any of these schemes, please read the individual scheme details and submit the following to elizabeth.hodges@law.ox.ac.uk by 12 noon, Thursday 10 May 2018. It is planned that interviews will take place Monday 21st and Tuesday 22nd May 2018.

  1. An application form describing briefly how your area of study is relevant to the chosen placement(s), your reasons for wishing to undertake the internship and a statement of costs and expected expenditure for the duration of the internship. Please also disclose other sources of funding (eg. scholarship stipends, personal funds or college grants) that have been granted to you in respect of this internship or for which you have applied. We also require you to list your chosen internships in order of preference.
  2. A CV (maximum 2pp) which should indicate what previous work you have undertaken, relevant to your application, including whether you have been an active member of any of the organisations or groups linked with the schemes you are applying for.
  3. Official transcripts (scanned copies).
  4. Two letters of reference, preferably from individuals able to speak to your abilities in the field of international law and/or human rights law. In the case of current research students, one of the referees should be the applicant’s supervisor.

The successful candidate will receive a maximum stipend of £2,000 to attend the Women’s Legal Centre and £1,500 to attend the Centre on the Death Penalty. These awards will contribute to travel, living and other expenses associated with the internship. In determining the amount to be awarded, other sources of funding will be taken into account. Successful candidates will be expected to provide a full report on their work at the end of their internship.

2. OPBP Internship Fund: (general applications)

In addition, OPBP welcomes applications from Oxford graduate students who wish to undertake internships at other organisations engaged in work related to human rights.  Applicants must establish that they have been offered an internship by the organisation, and also provide a description of the work the organisation undertakes.

Eligibility

Students currently pursuing a research degree or a taught graduate course in the Law Faculty (BCL/MJur/MSc/MSt/MPhil/DPhil) may apply.

Applicants may be about to complete their graduate degrees in Oxford or, in appropriate cases and after consulting their supervisor, may be seeking to intermit their studies in order to undertake the internship.

Additionally, applicants may apply for other internships within the Faculty of Law.

Applicants should demonstrate from their qualifications, especially their studies in Oxford, that they have sufficient knowledge of human rights law to make an effective contribution. Usually, applicants will have taken a course related to human rights law in an Oxford taught programme or will have engaged in research in an aspect of human rights law as part of their studies in Oxford.

Selection Criteria

The following selection criteria will be used in determining successful candidates:

  1. Relevance and value of internship to OPBP’s current work and possible future collaborations;
  2. Suitability of the applicant to the internship to be undertaken, with regard to background and experience;
  3. Benefit to the applicant’s professional development and a possible future career in public interest law by undertaking the internship;
  4. Ability of the applicant to demonstrate commitment to public interest legal work, including past participation in OPBP projects and/or the OPBP Executive Committee or other public interest work

 

Application Process

If you wish to apply for any of these schemes, please read the individual scheme details and submit the following to elizabeth.hodges@law.ox.ac.uk by 12 noon Thursday 10 May 2018. It is planned that interviews will take place Monday 21st and Tuesday 22nd May 2018.

  1. An application form describing briefly how your area of study is relevant to the chosen placement(s), your reasons for wishing to undertake the internship and a statement of costs and expected expenditure for the duration of the internship. Please also disclose other sources of funding (eg. scholarship stipends, personal funds or college grants) that have been granted to you in respect of this internship or for which you have applied. We also require you to list your chosen internships in order of preference.
  2. A CV (maximum 2pp) which should indicate what previous work you have undertaken, relevant to your application, including whether you have been an active member of any of the organisations or groups linked with the schemes you are applying for.
  3. Official transcripts (scanned copies).
  4. Two letters of reference, preferably from individuals able to speak to your abilities in the field of international law and/or human rights law. In the case of current research students, one of the referees should be the applicant’s supervisor.

The successful candidate will receive a maximum stipend of £1,000 to contribute to travel, living and other expenses associated with the internship. In determining the amount to be awarded, other sources of funding will be taken into account. Interviews are to take place Monday 21st May 2018. Successful candidates will be expected to provide a full report on their work at the end of their internship.

 

 

Hosting an OPBP intern

Hosting an intern is a win-win situation: as well as providing a capable and highly motivated graduate student with invaluable experience, host organisations benefit from interns’ existing skills and knowledge and from their willingness to learn. If your organisation might be interested in hosting an intern, we would love to hear from you at opbp@law.ox.ac.uk.