Each summer, we host one or two graduate students and/or law students to conduct research on policy matters or investigate potential impact litigation relating to issues affecting low-income residents of Hawai‘i. Students are typically given a single major litigation project to focus on during their 10 weeks with LEJ. By the end of the summer, students will have usually developed an extensive memo detailing their findings and making recommendations on potential reforms and how they might best be pursued. Students are given a high degree of responsibility and Appleseed relies heavily on the students’ work to advance advocacy goals.

For example, during the past two summers our law clerks have been conducting outreach and research on several projects including determining the barriers children eligible for Medicaid encounter in accessing mental health services, the effect that eviction court policies and practices have on tenants face with eviction and the impact of the proliferation of vacation rentals have on the availability of affordable housing for local residents.

Summer internships are unpaid.


Lawyers for Equal Justice will host law students in their second or third year of law school, graduate students, and undergraduate students as an extern/intern earning academic credit. Under the direct supervision of one of our attorneys, students will conduct research on issues affecting the low-income population of Hawai?i, help prepare potential litigation as well as participate in pending cases. Assignments may include drafting policy briefs, legal manuals, litigation memos and pleadings. Students may also be assigned projects that involve discovery and trial preparation.

Interested law students, graduate students, and undergraduate students should send an email to expressing your interest in a volunteer position. Please include in your email a current resume and letter of interest.

Fellowship Opportunities

Lawyers for Equal Justice will consider hosting post-graduate legal fellowships. Please contact for more information.

Grace Smith
University of Michigan Law School, Class of 2020
Prior to law school Grace was a special education teacher, a Teach for America Corp Member, and a ski instructor. At school, she is a member of the Michigan Journal of Environmental & Administrative Law and the Environmental Law Society, volunteers for a group that assists victims of domestic violence obtain PPOs and divorce and custody judgments, and is an advanced clinic student at Michigan’s Pediatric Advocacy Clinic. This summer Grace analyzed vacation rental legislation throughout the country and the status of eviction proceedings in Hawai‘i. She also researched access to youth mental health services on the islands.

Emily Orman
Yale Law School, Class of 2019
Emily grew up in rural Black Earth, Wisconsin before moving to the East Coast for undergraduate and law school. She grew up visiting Hawai‘i regularly with her family and had a wonderful time exploring the islands this summer. Her career aspirations include public policy and public interest law. Emily has been working on a children’s mental health services project this summer. This work includes conducting interviews with people who have faced barriers to access services, working with advocates and partner organizations, conducting research, identifying problem areas and brainstorming remedies.

Tyler Saito
William S. Richardson School of Law, University of Hawai‘i at M?noa, Class of 2019
Tyler grew up in Waimea on Hawai‘i Island where he competed in the Hawai‘i High School Rodeo Association. This summer, Tyler is working on issues relating to affordable housing, identifying how we can better develop and preserve critically needed housing for our residents.