Externships offer students the opportunity to gain insight into the legal system by seeing law in action, and to gain a deeper understanding of an area of the law by integrating classroom work with real world experience. Externships also allow students to explore their professional objectives, to understand better an area of practice, and to enhance opportunities for public/community service.
The majority of LL.M. students are eligible to participate in the LL.M. Academic Externship Program. International students in the one-year LL.M. program may participate in the Externship Program during their spring semester. Students in the Two-Year LL.M. program may participate during the summer between their first and second years, or during the second year of their program. By virtue of the fact that they receive an internship as part of their scholarship, COST Scholars are not permitted to do an externship for credit.
LL.M. students will receive two credits that will be graded on a pass/fail basis, provided they meet all deadlines and complete program requirements. Although LL.M. students may participate in only one “for-credit” externship during their LL.M. program, they are free to participate in as many non-credit internships as they can arrange and manage, assuming they have permission to work in the United States.
The academic externships must be unpaid and located in the DC metropolitan area. The student's direct supervisor must be an attorney. Students cannot be working, or have worked for, the organization if the students wish to receive academic credit.
Organizations select their own for-credit extern(s), and select these externs based on their own hiring criteria. If the externship is at a for-profit entity, the student's work product and time cannot be billed to a client.
The Academic Externship credits do not count toward the specialization credit requirements for either the LL.M. degrees or the LL.M. certificate programs.