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International Court of Justice University Traineeship Program

An opportunity is available to Michigan Law final-year JDs, LLMs, and recent graduates to apply for the International Court of Justice University Traineeship Program. The International Court of Justice clerkship begins in September each year and lasts for a period of 10 months (September 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019). The application deadline is January 14, 2018 at 11:59pm.

The primary duties of the trainees will be to assist Members of the Court in their tasks, including carrying out research, preparing case files, and drafting various types of documents. 

The Law School is grateful to Bruno Simma, formerly of the International Court of Justice and professor at Michigan Law, for his invaluable assistance in making this opportunity available to our students.  

Michigan Law students selected by the Court include:

2017-2018:  Erin Collins, JD '17

2016-2017:  Chaka Laguerre, JD '14

2015-2016:  Rosalind Elphick, LLM '15

2014-2015:  Ananda Burra, JD '14

2013-2014:  Sarah St. Vincent, JD '11

2012-2013:  Ciara Murphy, LLM '12

2011-2012:  Uzma Burney, JD '10

2009-2010: Klara Polackova, LLM '09

2008-2009: Ted Kill, JD '07

2007-2008: Noam Wiener, LLM '06

2006-2007: Marko Milanovic, LLM '06

2005-2006: Jason Morgan-Foster, JD '05

2004-2005: Sonia Boutillon, JD '03, and Carsten Hoppe, JD '04

Eligibility

Applicants must be final-year JD students or LLM students, who will complete the JD or LLM requirements in May, or recent JD or LLM graduates. Applicants must have excellent proficiency in one of the Court's official languages (French or English) and have a very good working knowledge of the other. They must have an excellent overall academic record as well as an excellent academic record in public international law, with demonstrated strong research and writing skills. Completion of or enrollment in one or more courses in international law, including one of the law school's introductory courses or an equivalent, is highly encouraged.

Application Process

To apply, eligible applicants must submit the following items to the Center for International and Comparative Law, University of Michigan Law School, Room 212 Hutchins Hall, 625 South State Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215, by Sunday, January 14, 2018:

  1. Letter of application to the International Court of Justice. The letter should include a statement of interest and highlight the applicant's relevant background and reasons for pursuing the traineeship. It should be addressed to: Jean-Pelé Fomété, Deputy-Registrar of the International Court of Justice, Peace Palace, 2517 KJ The Hague, The Netherlands.
  2. A completed ICJ University Trainee Application Form
  3. Description of the applicant's level of proficiency in French and background and experience in speaking, writing and reading in French
  4. Resume
  5. Official Law School transcript
  6. Current study list (document that lists current courses), which the applicant may request from the Law School's Office of Student Records (Room 416 HH; lawrecords@umich.edu)
  7. Two or more letters of recommendation, preferably from individuals who can speak to the applicant's credentials in the field of international law. At least one letter must be from a member of the Michigan Law faculty.>
  8. Writing sample. Applicants are encouraged to submit work that has been submitted for publication or other work of publishable quality. The writing sample is to be limited to 15 pages in length. The Court accords significant attention to this element of the application.

Please send your letter of application, completed ICJ University Trainee Application Form, statement of language proficiency, resume, current study list, and writing sample electronically to Elizabeth Snook at esnook@umich.edu. Your faculty recommender may send his or her letter to Ms. Snook by email as well. It is the applicant's responsibility to make sure that his or her application is complete by Sunday, January 14, 2018. If you are a 3L or an LLM, you are strongly advised to have completed a seminar or independent research project, preferably on an international topic, and received a grade by the application deadline. A Law School selection committee will decide on the candidates to nominate to the Court. It is anticipated that the Court will make the final selection decision from among the pool of nominees in April.

Funding

The Court does not have funding for University traineeships. Michigan Law will provide a stipend to a Michigan Law student selected by the Court. Practical arrangements such as travel, visa, accommodations, and medical and other insurance are the responsibility of the candidate.

Miscellaneous

The Court accepts no responsibility for the medical insurance of trainees or costs arising from accident or illness during a traineeship. The Court requires that each trainee has medical insurance that covers them during their stay in The Netherlands. Nor will the Court be liable in the event of compensation claims by third parties in respect to any loss or damage to their property, or death or personal injury, caused by the action or omission of trainees during their traineeship.

It is also important to note that trainees will be expected to observe all applicable rules, regulations and directions of the Court. Trainees will be bound by the obligation towards the Court of loyalty, discretion and confidentiality, and will be required to make a declaration to that effect.

Please direct questions about the program to Theresa Kaiser-Jarvis, Assistant Dean for International Affairs, at tkjlaw@umich.edu.


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