The Externship Program permits qualified 2L and 3L law students to be placed in judicial chambers for academic credit. If you participate in this program, you will benefit from excellent work by our students, and in addition, you will get a great deal of professional satisfaction in contributing to the development of the lawyering skills and values of these students. These are the general parameters of the program:
Educational goals of the Externship Program and the individual learning goals of students: Externship provides significant opportunities for students to learn professional skills and values, gain insight into their individual development as attorneys, learn to take responsibility for continued professional education, and provide assistance to chambers. Students will be required to set personal learning goals. Our students are expected to think critically about the law, the legal system, and themselves as developing lawyers; we ask that supervising attorneys and judges encourage them and join them in this process.
Schedule and time commitment of students: For the school year program, students are placed either for one or two terms, as arranged.
Externship students will either work 120 hours during a spring or fall term for 2 credits, or will work 180 hours for 3 credits. During the summer, students will choose to earn 2, 3, 4, or 5 credits. The choice of hours will depend on the student's schedule, as well as the preferences of the placement.
Credit/pay: Externs receive academic credit and are not paid. Placements may compensate students for expenses.
Supervision and work assignments : To be approved as a placement for our students, chambers must be committed to providing substantial work, guidance, and critique to the student and to communicate with the law school about student progress. A student should be assigned to an attorney or judge who will provide guidance to the student, being aware of the student’s individual learning goals and the program objectives. As far as possible, students should have assignments which correspond to the type of legal work done by judicial clerks at the placement, and should get candid and constructive critical feedback from supervisors. You are encouraged to permit supervised student practice pursuant to student practice rules for your jurisdiction. It is also very appropriate for students to have opportunities for learning by observation of experienced attorneys, for example, observing in court or attending conferences.
Reporting/evaluation requirements: At the beginning of the externship, the judge (or law clerk, in some chambers) meets with the student to discuss goals for the year or semester. The student is provided orientation to the placement. During the externship period, students keep time records, which supervisors review and sign. We ask that these records be sufficiently detailed to help review student progress at the placement, without, of course, violating any duty of confidentiality. At the end of each semester, supervisors are asked to write evaluations of each student, to be reviewed with the student. We also ask that you periodically discuss with the student how he or she is doing at other points during the externship experience.