Field Placements (Externships)
Externships offer an opportunity for second-year and third-year students to earn academic credit while working in outside law offices or judicial chambers. Externships enable students to explore legal work in the South Bend or other cities, including Chicago and Washington, D.C., that may not otherwise be available through clinics or other courses. Externship students participate in faculty-led seminars and other activities to help them reflect on their field experiences.
Notre Dame offers a wide variety of externship offerings, listed in the lefthand menu, that allow students to work in the field for as little as a half day per week or as much as four days per week. Many externships are subject-specific. On the other hand, several of our externship courses – the Lawyering Practice Externship, the Corporate Counsel Externship, the ND Law in Chicago program, and the ND Law in D.C. program – allow students to spend one, two, or four days per week in nearly any non-profit, governmental law office, court, or corporate counsel office of the student’s choosing. The opportunities are nearly limitless.
Many positions are eligible for the externship programs. For Lawyering Practice Externship, the ND Law in Chicago and ND Law in D.C. programs, students are free to choose from a list of existing placement sites or identify opportunities in consultation with Professor Jones. For the Corporate Counsel Externship, students should choose from among a selection of pre-approved sites.
For more information about available externship opportunities or the application process, please contact externship coordinator Cathy Kustner at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 574-631-9301.
Students should be mindful of the following externship policies:
1. Credits. The credits for externship courses are divided into regular academic credits (for the classroom portion of the course) and fieldwork credits (for the time spent in outside offices). Fieldwork credits are academic credits (not co-curricular credits) and count towards graduation requirements. Under the Hoynes Code, students may not earn more than ten hours of fieldwork credit. That means, for example, that a student could participate in both the Notre Dame Law in Chicago program (10 total credits including 8 fieldwork credits) and the 3-credit option in the Lawyering Practice Externship (3 total credits including 2 fieldwork credits). Hoynes Code 188.8.131.52
2. Compensation. In accordance with ABA accreditation standards, a student may not receive compensation for work performed as part of an externship course. Hoynes Code 184.108.40.206
3. No Simultaneous Externships. A student many not enroll in more than one externship course during a single semester. Hoynes Code 220.127.116.11
4. No Fieldwork/Class Time Conflicts. A student may not schedule fieldwork hours that conflict with regularly scheduled classes in the student’s other courses.
Click HERE to view the latest Externship Information Session
Students with questions about externships should not hesitate to contact Cathy Kustner, externship coordinator at email@example.com or 574-631-9301.