CEQ Legal Clerkship
The White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) has a competitive legal clerkship program and recruits clerks each spring, summer, and fall. CEQ accepts applications from prospective clerks on a rolling basis; however, due to the high volume of applications that we typically receive, we encourage applicants to abide by the following dates and deadlines:
|Start and End Dates||Application Deadlines|
|Fall||August - January||First Friday in June (6/6/14)|
|Spring||January - May||First Friday in October (10/3/14)|
|Summer||May- August||First Friday in January (1/2/15)|
Clerks are supervised by CEQ’s Office of General Counsel, and provide critical research and writing assistance to both legal and policy staff on a variety of matters pertinent to CEQ’s functions, including oversight of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Through CEQ’s participation in policy processes across the Federal government, clerks have the opportunity to perform diverse, substantive legal work, namely:
- Drafting memoranda on environment, energy, natural resources, and general law issues;
- Tracking Federal agency actions on environmental issues;
- Attending interagency working group meetings; and
- Assisting with responses to Freedom of Information Act requests and other inquiries regarding CEQ’s activities.
Clerks also have the opportunity to help advise CEQ’s policy teams on legal issues, and to analyze significant draft regulations through CEQ’s participation in the interagency regulatory review process under Executive Order 12866.
We are seeking second and third year law students and recent law school graduates who are highly motivated, willing to contribute where needed, and able to exercise professional judgment and maturity. In addition, applicants must be U.S. Citizens. There are no curricular requirements for selection as a law clerk; however, we prefer applicants who have completed environmental law, administrative law, legal research and writing, and statutory interpretation coursework, and whose work experience demonstrates a commitment to environment, energy, or natural resources issues. We also require a minimum commitment of thirty hours per week, and we strongly prefer a full-time commitment of forty hours per week. Our office will work with students who seek school credit for their uncompensated, volunteer service to CEQ.
Prepare the materials in the check-list below and combine them into a single PDF file addressed to the CEQ Attorney Advisor, Brooke Dorner. Name the PDF file following our convention: Last Name, First Name – 2014 Spring/Summer/Fall (select one) Clerkship Application Date Submitted; e.g., “Smith, Jane – 2014 Fall Clerkship Application 03-01-14.” Email the PDF file to firstname.lastname@example.org, indicating the session to which you are applying in the email subject line; e.g., “Fall 2014 Clerkship Application.”
CEQ will contact selected applicants to interview, usually within two to three weeks of the application deadline. Should you need to hear from CEQ sooner, please advise us of this fact by emailing email@example.com or calling the CEQ mainline at (202) 395-5750 and asking for Brooke Dorner.
Cover letter (see instructions below)
Resume (1 page maximum)
References (see instructions below)
Law school transcript (most recent; an unofficial transcript is acceptable)
Writing sample (3-5 pages maximum)
Your cover letter should address the following: (1) interest in environment, energy, and/or natural resources issues; (2) relevant coursework (e.g., Environmental Law, Administrative Law, Statutory Interpretation, and Legal Research and Writing); and (3) project management, leadership, and/or teamwork experience. Your cover letter (no longer than one page) should be addressed to CEQ Attorney Advisor, Brooke Dorner.
Your list of references should include three individuals who are able to speak to your legal research, writing, and ability to work well in a fast-paced office environment. This list must include at least one law school professor and one supervising attorney. Please list the names, titles, organizations, phone number, email address, and relationship with you for all references.
Note: The White House has a zero-tolerance policy for drug use. You will be required to take a drug test prior to beginning your clerkship. Failure to pass the drug test will result in your immediate disqualification.