CYLC Community-Based Immigration Legal Services and Language Justice Career Pathways

Learn More About CYLC Immigration Career Pathways

CYLC Career Pathways in Immigration

Providing critical supports to underserved immigrant communities

CYLC is working to create two new community change career pathways in the area of immigration. CYLC has begun partnering with state agencies, national and local partners, selected community colleges, community-based immigration legal services providers, and language justice advocates/interpreter training providers to create career pathways in community-based immigration legal services and language justice/interpreter training.

These career pathways will expand the number of well-trained paralegals, legal assistants, qualified interpreters, and nonprofit leaders who are prepared to serve immigrant communities.

Immigration Legal Services Pathway Fellowship

What is the CLINIC-CYLC Community-Based Immigration Legal Services Pathway Fellowship?

California Youth Leadership Corps (CYLC) has partnered with the Catholic Legal Immigration Network Inc. (CLINIC Inc.) selected community colleges, and Department of Justice-recognized community-based immigration legal services organizations to create a new community change learn-and-earn career pathway in community-based immigration legal services. This Community-Based Immigration Legal Services Pathway Fellowship will expand the number of well-trained advocates, practitioners, paralegals, legal assistants, and nonprofit leaders in underserved immigrant communities. Fellows who participate can receive a fellowship stipend of up to $10,000.

Immigration Legal Services Pathway Fellowship
Cohort 1 Fellows

Get to know some our First Cohort Fellows!

Lesly PLata

Los Angeles Mission College
Placement: International Rescue Committee

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Maria Pricilla Ramos

Fresno City College
Placement: Education and Leadership Foundation

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Janae Quarles

Fresno City College
Placement: Education and Leadership Foundation

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Dilraj Thandi

Fresno City College
Placement: Education and Leadership Foundation

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Karen Nieves Valdez

Fresno City College
Placement: Centro La Familia Advocacy Services

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Xitlalic Villanueva

Fresno City College
Placement: Central California Legal Services

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What benefits can students expect to gain through this fellowship?

This six-month fellowship consists of:

Training in Immigration Law. Fellows take CLINIC’s Comprehensive Overview of Immigration Law (COIL) through an eight-week virtual e-course, which requires at least 8 hours of study per week, alongside their courses for their course of study. The COIL provides an overview of core immigration law concepts and legal skills to enable students to quickly learn the fundamentals of immigration law and gain the training background to become effective legal advocates for low-income immigrants. 

Work-based Learning. To gain on-hands experience in the practice of immigration law, students are placed at a Department of Justice-Recognized community-based immigration legal services organization. The time commitment will be determined at field placement. Students typically work between 10 and 20 hours per week. 

Robust Academic and Social-Emotional Supports. Fellows participate in weekly check-ins with faculty and staff and are provided with the academic and social-emotional supports needed to succeed. 

Leadership Development and Enrichment Activities. Students also participate in enrichment activities such as leadership development workshops and activities and career advising that prepares them for employment as a legal advocate and/or practitioner in their local community.


Students must be enrolled at one of the participating colleges, Fresno City College, Los Angeles Mission College, or San Bernardino Valley College. While all majors and courses of study will be considered, priority will be given to students pursuing Ethnic Studies or Paralegal Studies. 

Application Deadline:

The application for the first cohort of fellows opens on Friday, June 30, 2023, and closes on August 1, 2023. Applicants can expect to hear back for interviews by August 4, 2023.

Contact Information:

For questions or more information about the fellowship, please contact: 

Genet Areda |

Rosa M. García |

Apply to our Immigration Legal Services Pathway Fellowship!

CYLC Community-Based Immigration Legal Services Career Pathway

Enabling more low-income immigrants to receive affordable, quality legal services

Through the CYLC community-based immigration legal services career pathway, more legal service providers and non-attorney staff will attain and maintain the proper credentials to practice immigration law. This will enable more low-income immigrants to receive affordable, quality legal services and to take advantage of existing immigration benefits and, eventually, obtain U.S. citizenship.

This project seeks to expand and enhance the ability of local nonprofit agencies to provide quality immigration legal services to low-income immigrants. The demand for these services has continuously outstripped the supply, particularly in rural areas of the state. It is also a timely project because the legal services community continues to need capacity in order to help people seeking asylum, family-based visas, and citizenship.

CYLC Language Justice Career Pathways

Enabling access to critical services for immigrant communities across California.  

The Language Justice Career Pathways seeks to expand the number of qualified interpreters who can provide interpretation and translation services to immigrant communities in California. California is the most multilingual state in the nation, with over 200 spoken languages and sign languages, and with 44 percent of Californians speaking a non-English language at home. Trained and qualified interpreters enable access to critical legal, health care, educational, and other services and empower immigrant communities to make their voices heard in local-decision making.   

However, few interpreter-training programs are available to aspiring interpreters who speak languages other than Spanish. Such programs are rarely available to under-resourced communities. With a third to half of California’s farm workers speaking an Indigenous Mexican language, the lack of accessible interpreter training is silencing some of our most marginalized communities. The Language Justice Career Pathway seeks to increase the number of qualified interpreters to better serve marginalized immigrant communities across California.

See Us in Action

Learn more about our work 

Learn More About CYLC

Interested in learning more? Feel free to reach out and connect!

Rosa M. García, Ed.D.
Executive Director, Community Learning Partnership (CLP) and
California Youth Leadership Corps (CYLC)
(m) 510-375-6340

Special Thanks to Our CYLC Immigration Pathways Funding Partners

We are proud to partner and collaborate with these partners to make CYLC possible

California Labor and Workforce Development Agency
California Department of Social Services
The Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr. Fund
The Grove Foundation