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Office of the General Counsel Legal Internship Program
U.S. Department of Education

Program Description:

The Office of the General Counsel’s (OGC) Legal Internship Program provides law students with an opportunity to build valuable legal and professional skills in research, writing, and advocacy, while learning about different areas of OGC’s work, such as education law and policy (e.g., early learning, K-12 education, career and technical education, other higher education, civil rights, special education), litigation, regulatory matters, employment and privacy law, contracts, and more.

Interns are typically assigned to two or more of OGC’s seven Legal Divisions and/or OGC’s Front Office, and assist with research and writing to support attorneys providing legal advice and counseling to clients, or assist in drafting and filing briefs or motions in litigation in support of the Department’s education mission and its operations. Interns also may be involved in matters related to proposed guidance, regulations, or legislation. For more information about OGC and its seven Legal Divisions, please visit:

We also provide our interns with professional and first-hand opportunities. Interns may attend sessions of Congress or Congressional hearings, particularly on topics related to education. Interns are invited to attend speeches or events in which the Secretary of Education or other senior leaders are speaking. We integrate our legal intern program with the Department’s broader intern program and also provide our interns with many opportunities to meet other interns and participate in social activities across the Department and within OGC.


There are no prerequisites or established GPA for applicants, but in previous years, selected interns have demonstrated strong academic achievement, excellent legal research and analytical skills, strong writing and verbal communication skills, excellent interpersonal skills, and an interest in the work of the Department.

Generally, interns must be current law students. In select circumstances, we may consider a candidate who is an undergraduate or graduate student with a demonstrated interest in education law and policy.

All interns work at the U.S. Department of Education headquarters in Washington, D.C. Our internship program accepts up to six law students per semester, with semesters beginning in the spring, summer, and fall. Interns work full-time in the summer, and full-time or part-time (e.g., 20 hours per week) in the fall or spring in order to accommodate coursework and schedules. The program is presently for non-paid internship positions. We are happy to work with institutions to ensure that interns receive academic credit for their internship work.

How to Apply and Deadlines:

Applicants should submit (1) a cover letter, (2) resume, (3) unofficial transcript, and (4) brief writing sample (no longer than 10 pages) sent via attachments in Adobe PDF or Microsoft Word Document format to

Given the large number of applications we receive for each deadline, to ensure full consideration, we encourage you to proofread your application to guarantee it is accurate and free of grammatical or typographical errors.

Applications are considered on a rolling basis, and positions may be filled before the deadlines indicated. As such, applying earlier—even a month or two early—is encouraged in order help ensure consideration:

  • Summer Semester: Applications from 2Ls will be considered August 15 through February 1, and applications from 1Ls will be considered December 1 through February 1.
  • Spring Semester: Applications will be considered through November 30.
  • Fall Semester: Applications will be considered through August 1.

Please note we are currently accepting internship applications for Summer 2021.

Keep in mind that summer is our most competitive semester, so we welcome and encourage spring and fall applicants as well.

Further information about the Department’s requirements and process in considering applications for internships is available here:

Last Modified: 01/11/2021