Students apply to the Clinical Program during the spring semester of their first or second year of law school for the following academic year. Most clinics carry 7 academic credits per semester, though a few carry 6 or 5. Some clinics are semester-only; others extend for a full year. Follow this link for a complete summary of credits and enrollment options, and this link for a detailed set of frequently asked questions about the application process.
The goal of all of our clinics is to give student attorneys the opportunity to represent real clients with real legal problems, to take full responsibility for clients’ cases, and to learn lawyering skills at both a practical and theoretical level. Each clinic offers student attorneys individualized instruction in the lawyering process and feedback and supervision from experienced faculty members. Through this process, student attorneys begin to understand the parameters and demands of being a lawyer. They must often struggle with ethical problems presented by their cases and confront the institutional frameworks within which client problems arise. Through their own actions, they see the way law operates in society.
The learning environment is intense because of significant demands on students’ commitment, creativity, intelligence, reflection, and time. Student attorneys often collaborate on cases and help each other with common problems that arise in their representation of clients. Student attorneys encounter, together with their peers, the frustration, excitement, fear and courage that are all part of being a lawyer. The program provides a supportive yet challenging environment for evaluating these experiences. This combination of intense involvement and detached reflection helps student attorneys clarify their views of their emerging careers.