In the J.D. Externship Program, students work under the supervision of a field supervisor attorney to gain substantial lawyering experience that is reasonably similar to the experience of a lawyer advising or representing a client or engaging in other lawyering tasks outside of the law school. Working in collaboration with their field supervisors, students establish individualized learning goals for their experience and receive ongoing feedback in a real world practice setting. At the Law Center, students participate in a companion seminar to reinforce their field placement experiences. Through the seminar, students consider essential topics involving professionalism, ethics, professional identity, legal problem-solving, work-life balance, and the role of a lawyer. Through regular classroom engagement, students enhance their learning at the field placement and develop critical reflective practices that they will use throughout their careers.
FIELDWORK: Students work for 10 or 15 hours per week for at least 11 weeks (110 or 165 hours total) in a judicial, governmental, or nonprofit field placement. Students must be supervised by a licensed attorney or an individual otherwise qualified to supervise a legal extern at the field placement. Georgetown Law defines "an individual otherwise qualified to supervise" as someone qualified to assign, review, and give substantive feedback on a student's legal or policy work. All fieldwork must be performed at the externship placement site, i.e., students are not permitted to work remotely in the J.D. Externship Program. Students are responsible for finding their own placements. Students may not be compensated for the work at their placement, nor may students work on pro bono matters at a for-profit entity. Students earn 2 pass/fail credits for 10 hours of fieldwork/week or 3 pass/fail credits for 15 hours of fieldwork/week.
Note: Students can begin working toward the hours/week requirement (110 or 165 hours total) from the first day of regular, semester-long classes. Students must complete the total hours requirement by the last day of classes. All fieldwork must be performed at the externship placement site, i.e., students are not permitted to work remotely in the J.D. Externship Program.
Note: Students must be fully eligible to start work at their field placement (i.e., security clearances and/or background checks complete) by the last business day before Add/Drop ends or they will be dropped from the J.D. Externship Program and companion seminar.
SEMINAR: In the externship seminar, students develop the tools necessary to fully participate in and learn from their contemporaneous field placement experiences. Additionally, students will become more adept at reflecting on and evaluating their practical experiences to ensure the lessons learned during the externship can assist with the development of future professional goals. Students will participate in a biweekly, interactive seminar, incorporating multiple opportunities for student performance of various professional lawyering skills and development of professional competencies that are universal to numerous legal settings. Portions of the seminar will be taught using a flipped classroom model. Students receive 1-credit for the seminar, which is graded on a letter grade basis.
ATTENDANCE IS MANDATORY AT ALL CLASS SESSIONS. Enrolled students must be in attendance at the start of the first class session in order to remain enrolled. Waitlisted students must be in attendance at the start of the first class session in order to remain eligible to be admitted off the waitlist. All enrolled students must attend each class session in its entirety. Failure to attend the first class session in its entirety will result in a drop; failure to attend any subsequent class session in its entirety will result in a withdrawal.
To receive academic credit, students must, at a minimum: (i) fulfill their applicable fieldwork hours requirement by the last day of classes; (ii) attend, participate in, and timely complete all assignments for the six externship seminar classes; (iii) receive a satisfactory Field Supervisor End-of-Semester Evaluation; and (iv) complete and submit all administrative assignments in a timely manner, including but not limited to:
- The Rule 304(d) Agreement;
- Weekly time sheets; and
- The Student End-of-Semester Placement Evaluation.
Additional, detailed course mechanics and requirements will be outlined in the seminar syllabus.
Students must have completed the required first-year program as a full-time or part-time student (per their student status) BEFORE their externship begins to participate in the J.D. Externship Program.
Note: Students do not pre-register for the J.D. Externship Program. Please see the registration information below.
To register for the Externship Program, students must first complete the externship application. The Fall 2019 Guaranteed Externship Application will open on Monday, June 10, 2019. The Spring 2020 Guaranteed Externship Application will open on Tuesday, October 15, 2019. Upon application approval, students must then enroll and/or waitlist themselves, via MyAccess, for an externship seminar.
For additional information on the externship enrollment process and deadlines, please see the 2019-20 Student Extern Manual.
For Fall 2019, the guaranteed application deadline is Wednesday, July 31, 2019. For Spring 2020, the guaranteed application deadline is Thursday, January 2, 2020.
Note: This seminar is only open to J.D. students participating in the J.D. Externship Seminar for the first time. If you have previously received academic credit for an externship through the J.D. Externship Program, you must enroll in the Externship II Seminar.
Note: Students who enroll in this course will be automatically enrolled in both the seminar and fieldwork components and may not take either component separately. A student wishing to withdraw from the course will be withdrawn from both the seminar and fieldwork components.
Registration for the Fall 2019 J.D. Externship Program will remain open until there are no seats left in the program or through Friday, August 30, 2019, whichever occurs first. Registration for the Spring 2020 J.D. Externship Program will remain open until there are no seats left in the program or through the first day of Add/Drop, whichever occurs first.
Please refer to the J.D. Externship website for more detailed program information.
Identifying a Placement:
Students are responsible for securing their own judicial, governmental, or nonprofit field placement. The Office of Public Interest and Community Service (OPICS) is available, by appointment, to discuss potential externship opportunities. In addition, the J.D. Externship program has resources to help you identify an externship placement.
Note: Additional, detailed course mechanics and requirements will be outlined in the seminar syllabus.
The J.D. Externship Program uses Canvas to administer this course, so comfort with that platform is essential. All course materials will be posted to your seminar's Canvas page. You will upload all assignments through Canvas, using the "Assignments" drop box for your seminar. If you encounter difficulty navigating Canvas and/or need a refresher on using the site, please contact IST at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The fieldwork components of externships are mandatory pass/fail offerings and do not count towards the seven-credit limit on pass/fail courses. The one-credit seminar is graded.