Program Associate, CIJ

Job Type

Full Time




Los Angeles
United States


The Vera Institute of Justice, founded in 1961, is an independent, non-partisan, nonprofit organization that combines expertise in research, technical assistance, and demonstration projects to assist leaders in government and civil society examine justice policy and practice, and improve the systems people rely on for justice and safety. Vera has offices in New York City, Washington DC, Los Angeles, and New Orleans, and its projects and reform initiatives, typically conducted in partnership with local, state, or national officials, are located across the United States and around the world. Vera is an equal opportunity employer with a commitment to diversity in the workplace.

Vera’s Center on Immigration and Justice seeks a Program Associate to work in its Los Angeles office with its Unaccompanied Children Program – a national program that provides legal information, pro bono assistance, and technical expertise to expand access to quality counsel for unaccompanied children in removal proceedings.

Vera’s Unaccompanied Children Program seeks a Program Associate to coordinate technical assistance efforts aimed at supporting California Department of Social Services legal services providers. Drawing upon Vera’s expertise in providing legal trainings and resources for attorneys on issues pertaining to removal defense for unaccompanied minors, Vera will provide CDSS-funded legal service providers with legal training, technical assistance, network coordination, capacity building resources, and access to a wealth of legal materials to help California-based attorneys provide quality legal assistance to unaccompanied children in removal proceedings.

The position is based in Los Angeles and is full-time.


The Program Associate will work closely with other program and research staff in carrying out the following duties:

  • Conduct periodic needs assessments of the CDSS-funded legal service providers;
  • Work with the Vera team and project partners to identify and address network technical assistance needs;
  • Organize and help prepare reports, including quantitative and qualitative analysis for our partners;
  • Plan, in consultation with the Vera team, webinars, quarterly coordination calls, surveys and phone consultations, as well as other technical assistance projects;
  • Assist in the development, review, and editing of program materials;
  • Help plan and coordinate annual on-site trainings;
  • Conduct legal and policy research, and write memoranda;
  • Develop and maintain relationships with project partners;
  • Identify promising practices among legal service providers and devise ways to disseminate information about such practices across the network;
  • Thoughtfully brainstorm solutions for challenges experienced by legal service providers; and
  • Assist on other projects as assigned.


Candidates must possess the following qualifications:

  • A n advanced degree (Masters or J.D.)or 7+ years’ experience working in immigration legal services/immigration removal defense;
  • A demonstrated knowledge of immigration, juvenile justice, or child welfare issues;
  • A desire to effectuate change in partnership with the government;
  • Strong writing and research skills;
  • Strong data analysis skills;
  • Strong communication and facilitation skills;
  • Strong multi-tasking abilities and organizational skills;  
  • Strong Excel, PowerPoint, and other computer skills;
  • Ability to work collaboratively on a team, as well as to take initiative and manage projects independently;
  • Ability to work on multiple projects effectively and efficiently;
  • Fluency in Spanish is a strong plus (proficiency in other languages is a plus)


$60k with excellent benefits.

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 cover letter and resume. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

Online submission in PDF format is preferred.

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

ATTN: Human Resources / CIJ 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.