Senior Program Associate, CIJ - (NYC, DC, LA, TX)

Job Type

Full Time


Details: High 70's, commensurate with experience, plus excellent benefits.




United States


This is a full-time position and can be based in New York City, Washington, DC, Los Angeles or remotely from Texas (preferably Houston). Please note that our headquarters currently in Manhattan will be relocating to Industry City in Brooklyn, NY next year.

Are you interested in joining an organization working to secure equal justice, a fair day in court for immigrants, end mass incarceration, and strengthen families and communities around the country? Do you enjoy working collaboratively on a team, as well as taking initiative and managing projects independently? Enjoy brainstorming and coming up with creative and sustainable solutions, specifically for individual program sites? Does the chance of splitting your time between the office and traveling across the states seem captivating to you? If so, this may be the ideal position for you! 

Who We Are

The Vera Institute of Justice, founded in 1961, envisions a society that respects the dignity of every person and safeguards justice for everyone.

  • We study problems that impede human dignity and justice.
  • We pilot solutions that are at once transformative and achievable.
  • We engage diverse communities in informed debate.
  • We harness the power of evidence to drive effective policy and practice.

Unaccompanied Children Program (UCP)

UCP is a national network that provides legal information and pro bono assistance to unaccompanied children in removal proceedings, both in, and released from, federal custody. The program is responsible for managing this network, including monitoring compliance with subcontracts, determining and promoting best practices, and providing technical assistance to subcontractors.

The Position

Vera’s Center on Immigration and Justice seeks a Senior Program Associate to work in UCP. We are looking for an individual who would feel at home developing and maintaining relationships with project partners. Someone who will be able to continuously identify promising practices among subcontractors and devise ways to disseminate information about such practices to encourage implementation elsewhere. The examples of core responsibilities provided below are illustrative and other responsibilities may be added over time.

  • Devise, manage, and coordinate technical assistance to program sites in the form of peer-to-peer on-site training programs, webinars, conference calls, surveys, phone consultations, and other means as appropriate;
  • Draft site visit evaluations;
  • Coordinate development and review of legal orientation materials (in English and Spanish) and provide meaningful feedback;
  • Oversee and assist in the preparation of reports to government partners;
  • Represent the Center in public speaking engagements and at professional meetings;
  • Manage the work of junior project staff and interns; and
  • Assist with other projects as assigned.

About You

You have demonstrated knowledge of immigration, child welfare, criminal or juvenile justice, or other justice areas, and are able to manage work on multiple projects effectively and efficiently. You are able to work collaboratively in a team, as well as take initiative and manage projects independently. You have a desire to effectuate change in partnership with the government. You have a JD and at least four years of legal, government, or policy work experience.

  • Strong writing and research skills;
  • Strong communication and facilitation skills;
  • Strong data analysis skills;
  • Ability to read and communicate effectively in Spanish (proficiency in other languages is a plus);
  • Experience representing detained immigrants and/or children is a strong plus;
  • Experience with “know your rights” and other community education initiatives are a strong plus;
  • A valid driver’s license.

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 and CIJ’s work, please visit


We want to be an employer of choice in our field, and supporting Vera staff—both personally and professionally—is a priority. To do this, we provide: 

  • Regular reviews of our salary structure to ensure that we are at or above market rate
  • Training and learning opportunities with leaders in our field
  • Eight weeks paid family leave and other generous time off benefits
  • Comprehensive insurance coverage, including medical and dental, life and accidental death, and disability
  • A retirement savings plan, including employer contributions and the opportunity for your own tax-advantaged savings
  • Tuition reimbursement and publication incentives

Professional Level

None specified

Minimum Education Required

No requirement

How To Apply

Please submit a cover letter, writing sample, and resume. The cover letter should outline the minimum and additional qualifications possessed by the candidate and address how the candidate will use those qualifications to excel at the position’s responsibilities. The writing sample should be no more than 10 pages.

Candidates will be considered on a rolling basis until the position is filled. Online submission of materials in PDF format is preferred.

However, if necessary, materials may be mailed or faxed to:

ATTN: Human Resources / CIJ Senior Program Associate Recruitment Vera Institute of Justice

233 Broadway, 12th Floor New York, NY 10279 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.