Public Service Careers

Our Career Development Office (CDO) is dedicated to helping students find opportunities with employers of all types, including public service employers. "Public service" encompasses both public interest and government employers.

The CDO has strong relationships with public service employers and engages in ongoing outreach to build and maintain relationships within the public service community in order to create job opportunities for students and graduates. Our programs allow students to engage with public service employers, help students learn about public service opportunities, and educate students about how to develop strategies for pursuing public service opportunities.

Our thorough understanding of students' backgrounds and interests combined with our knowledge of public service employers' missions, needs, and preferred qualifications enable us to effectively connect students and graduates with employers that fit their public service goals.

Learn more about Public Service at Colorado Law

Employment

Seventy-eight members of the Class of 2015 and 69 members of the Class of 2016 are working for public service organizations during the summer of 2014.

Public interest employers include:

  • Boulder County Legal Services (Louisville, CO)
  • California Office of the State Public Defender (Sacramento, CA)
  • Colorado Lawyers Committee (Denver, CO)
  • Colorado Legal Services, Migrant Farm Workers Division (Grand Junction, CO & Denver - Greeley, CO)
  • Colorado State Public Defender's Office (various locations)
  • Common Cause (Washington, DC)
  • Consumers Union (Washington, DC)
  • Earthjustice (Denver, CO & Oakland, CA)
  • First Peoples Worldwide (Fredericksburg, VA)
  • Immigrant Legal Center of Boulder County (Boulder, CO)
  • Independence Institute (Denver, CO)
  • National Conference of State Legislatures (Denver, CO)
  • Native American Rights Fund (Boulder, CO & Anchorage, AK)
  • Rocky Mountain Children's Law Center (Denver, CO)
  • Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network (Westminster, CO)
  • Sustainable Development Strategies Group (Broomfield, CO & Gunnison, CO)
  • Western Environmental Law Center (Taos, NM)

Government employers include:

  • 47th Judicial District Attorney's Office (Amarillo, TX)
  • Boulder City Attorney's Office (Boulder, CO)
  • Clark County District Attorney's Office (Las Vegas, NV)
  • Colorado Attorney General's Office (Denver, CO)
  • Colorado Department of Health Care Policy & Financing (Denver, CO)
  • Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (Denver, CO)
  • Denver City Attorney's Office (Denver, CO)
  • District Attorney’s Offices (throughout Colorado's Judicial Districts)
  • Federal Communications Commission (Washington, DC)
  • Federal Trade Commission (Washington, DC)
  • Governor's Office of Legal Counsel (Denver, CO)
  • Illinois Attorney General's Office (Chicago, IL)
  • U.S. Attorney's Office (Denver, CO)
  • U.S. Department of Education (Denver, CO)
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (Denver, CO)
  • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (Denver, CO)
  • U.S. Department of the Interior (Denver, CO & Washington, DC)
  • U.S. Department of Justice (Dallas, TX & Denver, CO)
  • U.S. Department of State (Geneva, Switzerland)
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (Denver, CO)
  • U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (Denver, CO)
  • U.S. House of Representatives, Office of Legislative Counsel (Washington, DC)

32.1% (51 students) of employed graduates in the Class of 2013 reported working in public service jobs nine months after graduation. Twenty-eight were in government positions and 23 were in public interest positions.

Post-graduate employers included:

  • 1st, 4th, 5th, and 17th Judicial District Attorney's Offices (Golden, Colorado Springs, Eagle, and Brighton, CO)
  • Colorado Attorney General's Office (Denver, CO)
  • Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (Denver, CO)
  • Colorado Legal Services (Denver, CO)
  • Colorado State Public Defender's Office (various locations)
  • Denver City Attorney’s Office (Denver, CO)
  • Denver District Attorney's Office (Denver, CO)
  • DNA People's Legal Services (Shiprock, NM)
  • Marin County District Attorney's Office (San Rafael, CA)
  • U.S. Air Force JAG Corps
  • U.S. Coast Guard JAG Corps
  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Benefit Administration (Denver, CO)

Financial Support

Colorado Law provides fellowships/stipends for summer work that would otherwise be unpaid or extremely low-paid. Through student groups and donor gifts, Colorado Law's Public Service Summer 2014 Fellowship Program provided 56 students with stipends ranging from $2,000 to $3,000 for public interest work with government agencies and non-profits located both nationally and internationally.

Additional summer fellowships for work involving environmental, natural resources, social justice, the public sector, international human rights, and public policy issues are available to students as a result of the generosity and public service commitment of Colorado Law's alumni and friends.

Graduates employed in qualifying public service positions may receive grants through Colorado Law's Loan Repayment Assistance Program to help them meet their student debt obligations.

 

Programming

To inform and educate students about the public service realm, our CDO presents information sessions throughout the academic year. Attorneys who work for public service employers are often the featured speakers. Recent public service information session topics have included:

  • Colorado Attorney General's Fellowship Program
  • Colorado State Public Defender's Office (Boulder County Office)
  • Financing Your Public Service Career
  • Presidential Management Fellowship ("PMF") Program
  • Project-based Fellowships
  • Pursuing Federal Opportunities
  • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Legal Honors Program
  • U.S. Department of Justice Honors Program

Colorado Law co-sponsors an annual Government and Public Interest Law Career Fair. Over 40 public service entities participated in the 2013 event. Participating organizations included:

  • Colorado Attorney General's Office
  • Colorado Center on Law and Policy
  • Colorado Juvenile Defender Coalition
  • Colorado Legal Services
  • Denver Public Schools
  • DNA People’s Legal Services
  • Earthjustice
  • Executive Office of Immigration Review (Immigration Court)
  • Federal Public Defender for the Districts of Colorado and Wyoming
  • GLBT Community Center of Colorado
  • Internal Revenue Service
  • Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

In January 2014, the CDO sponsored the 3rd Annual JD Pathways, a career conference that brought together 60 students and 80 attorneys, a number of whom work for public service employers. The conference included a Criminal Law Panel, a Local Government Panel, and a Public Interest Law Panel.

The CDO also hosts approximately 70 employers each academic year through the fall and spring On-Campus Interview (OCI) programs. Public service employers participate in Colorado Law's OCI programs alongside private sector employers. Participating public service employers who participated in our OCI programs during the 2013-2014 academic years included:

  • Colorado Attorney General’s Office
  • Colorado Office of Administrative Courts
  • Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
  • U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Colorado
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • U.S. Department of Transportation Honors Attorney Program
  • U.S. House of Representatives, Office of the Legislative Counsel

Job Search Resources

Our CDO maintains a regularly updated database of internship, externship and post-graduate job opportunities. The CDO also provides students and graduates with access to outside tools which are essential for learning about public service job opportunities, such as PSJD and the University of Arizona Government Honors and Internship Handbook. Colorado Law is also an Equal Justice Works member school, making our students and alumni eligible to participate in EJW's annual career fair, educational stipend program, and post-graduate fellowship programs.