I remember law school. I remember the huge demands on my time, the external pressures to be perfect and do as much as I can for a job at the end of the road, the imposter syndrome, and the worries about looming final exams. As I graduated in May 2020, right in the beginning of the pandemic, I quickly began longing for community of peers to talk to, vent to, and lean onto for support. Looking back, I wish I had known about the community of supporters and legal professionals in AILA who open their membership to current law school students.
For the last couple of years, a new and unparalleled resource has been available to law students and I wanted to make sure you all knew about it: the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) offers a free membership to current law school students. As the largest bar association of immigration law practitioners, AILA offers a wide and diverse community, bringing opportunities for collaboration and learning about this incredibly complex area of law. As a law student member, almost all the paid regular member benefits are yours, free of charge:
- Connection to your local AILA chapter and events
- The largest directory of Immigration Legal Practitioners Nationwide
- AILALink – AILA’s immigration legal research database, which includes electronic versions of all of AILA’s publications
- AILA Career Center – offering professional resume review, personalized career coaching, and nationwide job postings
- Access to Law Student Listserv to connect and collaborate with other Law Student Members
- AILA8 – Daily Immigration e-newsletter
- Law Student E-Newsletter specifically catered to law school students interested in the Immigration Field
- Access to AILA Agora free recordings and roundtable discussions.
- Advocacy and Media materials surrounding current immigration developments
- Discounts to attend National and Local AILA Immigration Conferences on Employment Based Visas, Family Based Immigration, and more!
Of all the resources listed above, I think the most valuable may be the opportunity to learn about your local chapter and get engaged with practitioners in the field in your community. Most AILA local chapters host a monthly event, where AILA law student members would be welcome to join to network with the current immigration practitioners in your area.
AILA as an organization is committed to offering these services at no cost to law school students. As former law school students themselves, AILA members recognize the importance and formative years that law school will have on any student’s future career. As a community, we are excited to offer a supportive environment and access to the Immigration Legal Network that shapes our day-to-day practice.
If you have any questions about how to join as an AILA Law Student member, please reach out to us through the firstname.lastname@example.org email address.
Any law students interested in a summer fellowship may want to review AILA President Jeremy McKinney’s recent blog post on the Michael Maggio Summer Fellowship and apply – deadline was extended to March 17!