SAMPLE COVER LETTER
40 Oaklyn Street, Apt. 3
Somerville, MA 02143
October 24, 2006
Sandra Hauser, Esq.
National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty
918 F Street, N.W., Suite 412
Washington, D.C. 20004
Dear Ms. Hauser:
I am in my second year at Harvard Law School and am writing to apply for an internship working
with the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty this summer. Alexa Shabecoff, Assistant
Dean for Public Service at Harvard Law School, suggested that I contact you personally. As you can
see from the enclosed resume, I have experience working directly with low income clients. I have
worked on grassroots organization, advocacy for individual clients and policy development. I believe
that impact litigation will be an important addition to my experience.
Working as a VISTA volunteer in poor, rural North Carolina provided me with grassroots experience
and a perspective on how the law often inhibits, rather than assists, efforts to improve individual
communities. My tenure at VISTA helped me develop the interpersonal skills crucial to assisting
clients effectively. In addition, I had the opportunity to continue my work in policy development,
specifically housing policy, which I had previously performed at Habitat for Humanity.
Last summer, I served as a translator for the Australian aborigines, enabling their stories of injustice
to be more widely read. Our work was constrained by judicial interpretation of the relevant land
rights statutes and by administrative institutions. While in Australia, I came to see that the aborigines
had problems which, in many ways, mirrored the problems of North Carolina's rural poor. These
hardships, which I aim to address more effectively with my legal education and background, include
poor housing, inadequate education and unresponsive legal systems.
During law school, I have gained advocacy skills through clinical programs and extracurricular
activities such as counseling clients, gathering information, providing referrals and advocating in
court. Working directly with clients in the legal system has given me opportunities to see how the
law affects real people, but that justice often seems to get lost in the shuffle of overwhelming
I would greatly appreciate the opportunity to discuss your current projects and how I might be of
assistance this summer. I have enclosed my resume and writing sample. I can be reached at (617)
555- 8553 and will call you in a week to discuss the possibility of a meeting. Thank you for your