Externships Short

Full-Term Externship

The Full Term Externship allows students to craft a unique educational experience. Each student locates a setting that will advance his or her educational goals. These can include the following areas: not-for-profit sector, governmental agencies, in-house counsel offices in media or sports, or judicial clerkships. In prior years, students have worked in a wide variety of settings, such as:

  • State and federal prosecutors’ offices and public defender offices
  • United States Department of Justice, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, the NLRB, the EEOC, the Office of Education
  • United Nations Office of Legal Affairs, and office of the High Commissioner for Refugees
  • ACLU, the Northwest Women’s Law Center, South Brooklyn Legal Services and other legal aid offices, Center for Constitutional Rights, Asian Law Caucus, National Conference of American Indians, Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund, NAACP
  • AFL-CIO and the Screen Actors Guild
  • Clerks for trial court and appellate judges Offices of United States senators and Congressional committee offices
  • In-house counsel offices at News Corp., Fox News, Harper and Collins, Warner Brothers Studios, and the NFL Management Group

“The externship provided me the opportunity to learn in an entirely different way from what I ever could have experienced in the classroom. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity to have experienced, talented attorneys agree to have you work for them in exchange for the insight they can provide on your work – a true mentorship.” Anonymous student’s course evaluation comment

Students’ experiences differ, depending on the nature of the placement. However, in the past students have participated in the following experiences:

  • Representation of clients in hearings and trials
  • Legal research and writing
  • Pre-trial and trial activities
  • Attendance at policy and staff meetings
  • Attendance at state and federal legislative hearings
  • Fact investigation
  • Drafting of discovery devices, motions, briefs, and pleadings; legislative proposals; policy memoranda; contracts and other business documents
  • Direct interactions with clients and opposing parties

Some students in prosecutor and public defender offices, as well as legal aid offices, have been admitted to practice, and have done motion arguments, conferences, and trials. In post-externship evaluations, students frequently commented that they became an integral part of the office because they were there full time. This allowed students to experience a range of activities that would not be available to them otherwise.

“The full-semester externship has been an incredible experience for me. The level of responsibility I had as an 'attorney’ alone was a valuable experience and that was only one small aspect of the experience as a whole." Anonymous student’s course evaluation comment

During the semester, students participate in a weekly web based discussion board with the faculty member and other students enrolled in the Full Term Externship. They also write weekly, reflective journal entries that are shared with the instructor. Normally, the instructor visits the student at his or her placement during the semester, and receives evaluations from the placement site supervisors. All of these activities are designed to assure that the students’ experiences further the students’ goals and legal education.