The Arthur Garfield Hays Civil Liberties Program, founded in 1958, awards fellowships to a small group of third-year students committed to civil liberties and offers them unique opportunities. Fellows are awarded a $12,000 stipend and the Hays Program assists Fellows entering public interest careers, with expenses related to the bar examination. Fellows also earn one academic credit for participation in the Program and may satisfy certain writing requirements through their written work. Fellows are selected in a participatory process that includes interviews by the co-directors, the current Hays Fellows and former Fellows.
Fellows work in special internships, usually two during the academic year, for civil liberties and other human rights organizations on litigation, legislation, and other legal assignments. Fellows may also work on research or special projects with one of the Program's Faculty Directors. The Fellows and Directors meet each month to discuss the Fellows’ work and also meet regularly with former Hays Fellows or other guests to discuss current civil liberties problems.
There are several endowed fellowships in the Hays Civil Liberties Program, each honoring individuals who dedicated much of their lives to civil liberties: The Roger Baldwin Fellowship in Civil Rights and Human Rights; the Leonard Boudin Fellowship in First Amendment Law; the Norman Dorsen Fellowship in Civil Liberties; the Deborah Rachel Linfield Fellowship in Freedom of the Press; the Robert Marshall Fellowship in Civil Liberties; the Harriet Pilpel Planned Parenthood Fellowship; the Tom Stoddard Fellowship to advance the rights of lesbians and gay men; and the Palmer Weber Fellowship in Civil Rights.