Creating a Path to Clerkships

NDLS Programs and Resources Show Commitment to Public Law Opportunities


Nine months after graduation, 18 members of the Class of 2012—9% of the class—report having secured federal clerkships. With that percentage, Notre Dame stands in a tie for 10th place among all law schools nationwide, according to data reported to the American Bar Association.

The Notre Dame Law School maintains a strong commitment to placing students in federal judicial clerkships through academic programs and career development initiatives.

Launched in 2011, the Program of Study in Public Law provides a plan of study for students interested in judicial clerkships, as well as government lawyering, criminal justice, constitutional litigation, administrative regulation and adjudication, public policy, and other public law fields.

Likewise, the Program on Constitutional Structure, launched in 2010, is an interdisciplinary program that helps prepare students for careers in all areas of public law. The program involves up to 15 different faculty members, four of whom are from the Department of Political Science.

In addition to these programs, NDLS faculty members have developed courses of independent study for law students preparing for judicial clerkships. These for-credit opportunities allow students to work closely with a faculty member with clerkship experience and expertise in related fields of law. 22 NDLS faculty members have federal clerkship experience, including 10 members who have clerked for justices of the Supreme Court of the United States.

Beginning in Fall 2012, the law school’s Career Development Office (CDO) dedicated a specific counselor to clerkships and educational programming. Jacquelyn Cascarano, NDLS’s Career Counselor and Judicial Clerkships Advisor, assists students in exploring clerkships and creates programming opportunities—including an annual three-part clerkship application series and panel discussions with NDLS faculty. The CDO produces a comprehensive Judicial Clerkship Handbook for NDLS students, and works closely with current NDLS faculty and alumni to help students connect with federal clerkship opportunities.

Additional Resources

Notre Dame Law School Admissions Office
Faculty Directory