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Summer Internship 2023 - Program Intern, Jails Team

Vera Institute of Justice

Vera Institute of Justice

Brooklyn, NY, USA
Posted on Thursday, April 6, 2023

Who we are:

The Vera Institute of Justice, founded in 1961, is a nonprofit criminal justice organization that strives to build just government institutions and safe communities free from the scourge of racism, white supremacy, profit, and inequity that is pervasive in this country’s legal systems. We are an “inside” lane organization that drives change at scale with ambitious public sector leaders who share our commitment to building anti-racist, reparative systems that deliver justice. We leverage our access to government to transform these systems and work collaboratively with stakeholders across many movements—including advocacy, grassroots, and grasstop organizations. Our role is to pilot solutions that are transformative and achievable, harness the power of evidence to drive effective policy and practice, and use advocacy and communications to change narratives and norms.

Vera has a staff of 300 people and offices in New York City, Washington, DC, Los Angeles, and New Orleans. We are an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to diversity in the workplace. We expect our staff to embody respect, independence, collaboration, commitment, anti-racism, and equity—both in our outward-facing work and the internal culture of our workplace. We value a range of experiences in people’s educational backgrounds and encourage people who have been directly impacted by the criminal justice system to apply.

Who you are:

The Jail Decarceration, Closing Mass Incarceration’s Front Door, and In Our Backyards teams have merged into one initiative to form the Jails Team. Together they work to change practices, policies, and laws that drive pretrial detention, criminalization, and excessive supervision in a set of priority states.

The Jails Team program intern will support a wide array of project needs. Primarily, you will be responsible for supporting research tasks such as building our knowledge-bank on county and state-level stakeholders, creating policy-specific materials (slide templates and memos) for team use, and tracking news / key updates in the team’s focus states for broader team awareness.

The learning goals of this internship include fostering skills in, and an understanding of, project management, qualitative research, and writing for diverse audiences.

What you'll do:

Research and review materials

  • Prepare memos, briefings, decks, and other materials to support state and county-level work
  • Review existing research products and literature, including data visualizations

Focus state landscaping

  • Stay up to date on current events and news in priority states
  • Create brief round-ups for team with relevant updates

Other ad hoc duties as needed

What qualifications are we looking for?


  • Excellent interpersonal communication skills
  • Ability to write for multiple audiences
  • Keen sense of how to use search engines to your advantage
  • Exceptional organizational skills and attention to detail
  • Self-starter


  • Directly-impacted by the criminal legal system
  • Experience working with community-based organizations
  • Previous involvement with a local / statewide issue / electoral campaign


Please note this role will report to our Brooklyn, NY office. Vera interns and employees adhere to a hybrid schedule and are in-office on an alternating schedule. Full-time positions generally amount to 10 days per month. Part-time positions generally amount to 5 days per month.


The intern should be available to work between 25 - 30 hours per week during the summer. The dates will be between June 5th and August 11th, with some flexibility to accommodate personal and academic schedules.


The compensation range for internships is $16.00 - $25.00 per hour. Actual compensation will vary depending on factors including but not limited to experience and performance. Applicants may choose to receive academic credit. For those who need to earn academic credit, Vera will gladly assist in working with the school or program to make arrangements and meet requirements.

How to apply:

Please submit cover letter and resume. In your cover letter, please explain why you are passionate about criminal justice reform and what you hope to gain from this internship.

Applications may also be faxed to:

ATTN: People Resources / Program Intern, Jails Team
Vera Institute of Justice
34 35th St, Suite 4-2A, Brooklyn, NY 11232
Fax: (212) 941-9407
Please use only one method (online, mail or fax) of submission.
No phone calls, please. Only applicants selected for interviews will be contacted.

In order to ensure a healthy and safe work environment, Vera Institute of Justice is requiring all employees to be fully vaccinated and provide proof of their COVID-19 vaccine before their start date. Employees who cannot receive the vaccine because of a disability/medical contraindication or sincerely-held religious belief may request an accommodation (e.g., an exemption) to this requirement.

Vera is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will be considered for employment without unlawful discrimination based on race, color, creed, national origin, sex, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, military status, prior record of arrest or conviction, citizenship status, current employment status, or caregiver status.

Vera works to advance justice, particularly racial justice, in an increasingly multicultural country and globally connected world. We value diverse experiences, including with regard to educational background and justice system contact, and depend on a diverse staff to carry out our mission.

For more information about Vera, please visit www.vera.org