Things You Should Know About Clinics.
Who may apply for a clinic?
Second, third and fourth year law students, who have completed at least two semesters of law school as full-time students or a minimum of 30 credits as part-time evening students, are eligible to participate in the Clinical Program. LL.M. students in their second semester of study may also be eligible, but their ability to participate varies with each clinic. In addition, each clinic may have particular pre- or co-requisites that affect eligibility.
Are the clinic seminar and case work graded?
Yes, all clinic interns receive a letter grade for their seminar and a letter grade for their work on cases/matters. Nearly all clinics allocate 2 credits for the seminar and 3 for the casework. (Mediation is the only clinic which allocates 3 credits for the seminar and 1 for the fieldwork.) Grades are based on classroom participation, work on clinic matters, and professional development in case work.
Does every applicant this semester get into a clinic this semester?
Unfortunately, no. Clinic enrollment is limited. Our policy is to give a preference to those who will be third year day students, fourth year evening students and students who have not taken a clinic. Some clinics receive more applications than others. All of these factors may affect your ability to take a particular clinic when you would like. Students not accepted into their first choice clinic will be forwarded to their second choice for consideration and, if necessary, to their third choice.
Virtually every student who wishes to take a clinic, and who can be flexible in their preferences, will have the opportunity to do so. Students who are closed out of their first choice clinic are strongly encouraged to consider enrolling in their second or third choice clinics, if given the option, or to reapply the following semester. While the draw of a particular subject matter is understandable, we encourage you to think broadly about the nature of the experiences you will have and skills you will develop in any clinic experience. Almost everything you learn in every clinic will better prepare you for being a lawyer, regardless of what area you eventually practice in.
How do I register for a clinic?
Registration for a clinic is conditioned upon acceptance into a clinic. Once you have accepted an offer to join a clinic, clinic staff will notify the Registrar who will pre-register all accepted students.
Can I take more than one clinic?
Due to demand, it is possible, yet highly unlikely. On occasion, students enrolled in a clinic may stay on for a second semester.
Are there pre-requisites for enrollment?
Please visit the Spring 2020 Course Offerings page to review each individual clinic's pre-/co-requisites and recommended courses. Almost all clinics require Fundamental Lawyering Skills. (LL.M. students wishing to seek a waiver of prerequisites should communicate directly with the appropriate faculty member.)
May I do an externship for credit and also enroll in a clinic?
No. Students may not register for externships in any semester for which they have accepted offers from five-credit in-house clinics. The Mediation Clinic is the only clinic in which a student may participate while doing an externship for credit.
How many hours per week do students work in their clinic?
Students are expected to spend approximately 12 to 15 hours per week on clinic fieldwork, which is separate from classwork. To satisfy client/matter needs and meet their professional responsibilities, students may have to put in more hours in any given week. As with most professional undertakings, students may experience some weeks when their work responsibilities are heavy and some weeks when the work is lighter.
Some clinics require students to spend set hours each week in the clinic office, in court, or engaged in other fieldwork activities. All clinics, however, expect students to satisfy their client needs and meet their professional responsibilities.
The clinic experience is about "learning by doing" as you step into the lawyer role. It is a serious commitment. You should approach enrolling in a clinic with the same deliberateness as you would approach taking on a new job.