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What We Do

Michigan Law students interested in child welfare issues have an unparalleled opportunity to focus on child advocacy issues through their involvement in the Program on Children and the Law. Students can participate in litigation clinics focusing on foster care and juvenile delinquency issues or in a mediation clinic giving them the chance to apply alternative dispute resolution skills in child custody cases. The clinics are supplemented by doctrinal courses in children and the law and juvenile justice, along with seminars and workshops exploring current issues in the jurisprudence governing the lives of children.

Beyond the classroom, students interested in exploring issues affecting children have myriad opportunities. The student group Legal Advocates for Children and Youth serves as the umbrella organization for student-led programming on children's issues and coordinates Michigan's involvement in a national child-welfare law moot court competition. Students can also complete an internship—either for academic or pro bono credit—at the Detroit Center for Family Advocacy, a Law School initiative in Detroit preventing kids from entering or remaining in foster care. Students can also take a semester away from the Law School and participate in an externship at a child welfare organization anywhere in the world. And those students interested in delving more deeply into child-welfare issues often work with the faculty to conduct research and write independent studies.

For those interested in pursuing a career in child-welfare law, the Program on Children and the Law will prove the foundation needed to make an immediate impact in the community.