Law Fellow Program
“If law school is supposed to teach you to ‘think like a lawyer,’ being a law fellow taught me how to communicate like a lawyer. Not only did the program sharpen my own personal legal research and writing skills, but it taught me how to communicate new and unfamiliar concepts effectively to my peers.” — Jonah Perlin, J.D. 2012
Georgetown’s Law Fellow Program offers the school’s strongest upper class writers the opportunity to further hone their skills under the mentorship of experienced faculty members. Law Fellows are selected in a highly competitive process and are vital to Georgetown’s first year Legal Practice Program. Working with roughly ten first year students, Law Fellows facilitate classroom exercises; hold regular office hours; draft extensive, substantive comments on student writing; and conference individually with students. Faculty work closely with Law Fellows throughout the year, providing detailed feedback on all of their comments before each paper is returned to the students.
To prepare for their roles as co-teachers and mentors, Law Fellows attend a week of intensive training before the fall semester begins. Once the semester starts, they meet weekly in a two-hour seminar. Throughout the year, Law Fellows read scholarship on the complexities of teaching writing to law students, research and often write their own version of each assignment to anticipate the students’ needs, and practice commenting and conferencing.
Although Law Fellows are selected for their role in part because of their strong research and writing ability, their work as fellows transforms them into excellent legal writers. Fellows also universally report how much being a Law Fellow enriched their experience as a member of the law school community, giving them a unique opportunity to develop close mentoring relationships with faculty and students.
From judges to law firms to non-profit organizations, all employers want to hire graduates who can write well, are able to help colleagues improve their writing, and can collaborate with their colleagues to produce effective finished products.
Law Fellow alumni consistently say that being a Law Fellow was one of the most rewarding and valuable experiences of their time in law school and that the skills they developed as Law Fellows benefited them tremendously in their professional lives.