Thank you for your interest in participating in the Georgia State Law Externship Program. The training and mentorship that site supervisors give our students better prepares them to be ethical, responsible and effective lawyers. Our site supervisors provide students with a significant educational experience and one-on-one mentoring.
Externships provide law students with the opportunity to apply the theoretical knowledge gained in the classroom to “real world” legal problems. Students earn academic credit while working outside the law school in non-profits, government agencies, corporations, law firms, and with judges. Students are paired with supervising attorneys who work one-on-one with students as they develop their legal skills. Students also work throughout the semester with a faculty supervisor who helps guide their learning experience.
The externship provides work experience in the legal profession and gives students an opportunity to determine the type of work that will best suit them post-graduation, whether or not they’ve done any legal work in the past. Some students choose a particular externship because it will give them exposure to a field of law they hope to practice in the future. Others pursue a specific opportunity to strengthen an identifiable skill set. Judicial externships, for example, are an excellent way to enhance legal writing skills.
Since the heart of the externship experience is on-site legal work, the site supervisors serve as the teachers and mentors at the externship placement. Accordingly, site supervisors are carefully screened to ensure they will provide students with meaningful legal work, mentor students, provide extensive feedback on student work, timely submit student evaluations, and otherwise comply with program requirements.
The program can only consider new sites that meet these minimum criteria:
- The placement is with a judge, nonprofit organization or governmental agency. We do not place students in private corporations or law firms.
- At least one attorney, employed at the site, must supervise the extern(s).
- Because the externship is intended to be a learning experience rather than an employment experience, supervisors must be willing to act as mentors. Often, it requires more time to supervise a student than to complete the work oneself. Supervisors must be willing to provide regular feedback to each extern about work performance and written work product.
- The work performed by the extern must be legal in nature.
Although agencies that meet the above criteria will be considered, priority will be given to those placements that offer students exposure to fields of law under-represented in the Externship Program.
The training and mentorship that our Externship Program site supervisors give our students is invaluable in preparing them to be ethical, responsible and effective lawyers. We thank you for your willingness to become directly involved with our program. We could not offer this enriching educational experience to our students without your partnership.
Georgia State Law is a member of the Georgia Association of Legal Externships (GALE), which includes Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School, Emory University School of Law, Mercer University School of Law and the University of Georgia School of Law.
To ensure you and your office have an equally rewarding experience while working with Georgia State Law externs, we have prepared these resources.
- Marjorie M. Shultz and Sheldon Zedeck, 26 Lawyering Effectiveness Factors.
- Robert MacCrate, Overview of the Skills and Values Analyzed in the Statement, Legal Education and Professional Development – An Educational Continuum (Student Edition).
- Liz Ryan Cole and Leah Wortham, Learning from Supervision, Learning from Practice: A Professional Development Text for Legal Externs (Chapter 3), 2d ed. (Thomson West).
- Leah Wortham, Setting Goals for the Externship, Learning from Practice: A Professional Development Text for Legal Externs (Chapter 2), 2d ed. (Thomson West).
- Alex Scherr, Learning About Lawyering, Learning from Practice: A Professional Development Text for Legal Externs (Chapter 2), 2d ed. (Thomson West).
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