Externships, also known as external studies opportunities, offer an exciting opportunity to augment classroom study with real-world work experience. In recent years, students (under the guidance of both a faculty sponsor and an attorney supervisor) have pursued externships and immersed themselves in legal work for an entire semester at nonprofits such as the Institute for Justice, the Food and Drug Administration, Asian Pacific Islander Legal Outreach, the Human Rights Law Network in New Delhi, India, and the Financial Action Task Force in Paris, France.
The Law School also has special externships based in South Africa and Geneva, Switzerland. The South Africa externship program takes place during the winter academic term and is managed by the Office of Student Affairs. The Geneva externships also occur during the winter academic term and are managed by the Center for International and Comparative Law.
Amy Sankaran, Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor, serves as the externship faculty supervisor for all full- and part-time and South Africa placements.
Christine Gregory, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, provides ongoing administrative support for these externship programs.
Externship interest meetings are held at the beginning of each semester. Students interested in pursuing an externship are advised to attend one of these sessions.
It is recommended that students investigate externship opportunities well before the informational meeting, as application requirements will vary from site to site. A variety of placement opportunities are listed on this site; students are not limited to these, however, and should feel free to explore areas that are of interest to them.
A program may not be undertaken with an organization engaged in providing legal services of any nature for profit, or with a court as a judicial clerkship. Special care must be taken in structuring a program with a legislative office to guard against diversion from legal education to political effort; staff positions with legislative committees are thus more likely to be approved than positions with individual legislators or elected officials. Special care must also be taken by a student proposing work for a small organization to ensure the organization has a sufficient agenda of worthwhile projects and is able to provide careful and adequate supervision.
The student may not accept payment for work done during the externship, except for reimbursement of reasonable out-of-pocket expenses related to the program.