Monday, March 1, 2021
23d Annual Trina Grillo Public Interest and Social Justice Retreat (online March 12 at Pepperdine Caruso)
The Trina Grillo Public Interest and Social Justice Retreat, now in its 23d year, is an annual event for California and Nevada law students, law professors, and public interest attorneys. It's usually a smaller weekend gathering, sponsored by several area law schools and SALT, to learn, develop friendships and mentorship, and to gain new energy for public interest and social justice work. This year, Pepperdine Caruso School of Law is hosting the event online, and the sponsoring schools have eagerly agreed to throw wide the doors and invite law students, profs, and lawyers from around the nation for a single day event on Friday, March 12.
The 2021 Consortium Schools:
UC Hastings School of Law
UC Irvine School of Law
Santa Clara University School of Law
Pacific McGeorge School of Law
Pepperdine Caruso School of Law
Southwestern Law School
UCLA School of Law
UC Berkeley School of Law
UNLV William S. Boyd School of Law
University of San Francisco School of Law
USC Gould School of Law
LSU Law Journal for Social Justice & Policy Symposium: Fighting White Supremacy in the 21st Century (March 19)
Via Prof. Clare Ryan:
The LSU Law Journal for Social Justice & Policy is hosting its inaugural symposium, “Fighting White Supremacy in the 21st Century,” on Friday, March 19, 2021 (3-5 PM CST). The panel will consist of five distinguished legal scholars.
The virtual symposium is free and open to the public. To register – and learn more about the event, the journal, and the panelists – please visit https://www.law.lsu.edu/
From the site:
At its inaugural symposium on Friday, March 19, at 3 p.m. (CST), the LSU Law Journal for Social Justice & Policy will host a panel of legal scholars from law schools across the country to discuss the fight against white supremacy in the 21st century, present their research, and submit their papers for publication in the journal’s first issue this spring. The event will be held virtually via Zoom and 1.3 CLE credit hours (Course #: 5170210319) are available for participants.
About the LSU Law Journal for Social Justice & Policy
The LSU Law Journal for Social Justice & Policy is a student-edited, academic journal based at the LSU Paul M. Hebert Law Center. The journal was spearheaded in Fall 2019 by a pair of students who were interested in promoting the discussion of issues relating to social justice and public policy at LSU Law. The mission of the journal is to reach current and future members of the legal profession with fresh perspectives on controversial issues relating to social justice and policy, and address a gap in the types of matters explored in the context of academic legal writing at LSU Law. Moreover, the journal hopes to provide students with an additional forum to express their views concerning this subject and develop their legal writing skills through journal membership. The journal is committed to elevating the voices of law students, practitioners, and academics of color in legal scholarship.
Thursday, February 25, 2021
The School of Law at the University of California, Davis is recruiting for two Legal Research and Writing instructors. Positions are non-tenure track, one-year appointments with possibility of renewal. Salary will be commensurate with experience. Applicants must have a J.D. from an A.B.A. accredited school, bar admission, and law practice experience.
All candidates must apply through the UC Recruit system at the following link: https://recruit.ucdavis.edu/JPF03989. In addition, as part of their application, candidates must include a Statement of Contributions to Diversity, as described at http://academicaffairs.ucdavis.edu/diversity/equity_inclusion/index.html. Please submit a cover letter and C.V. Previous teaching experience and demonstrated effectiveness in teaching is preferred, but not required. If possible, please provide two different sets of teaching evaluations and contact information for three to five professional references. To ensure review of your application, please submit all materials by March 15, 2021, although we recommend that you submit your materials as soon as possible.
Unit 18 Lecturers are governed under a collective bargaining agreement (American Federation of Teachers (AFT) - Non-Senate Instructional Unit). Under this contract, once a lecturer accumulates enough quarters of service, the lecturer can be reviewed for a Continuing Lecturer position. For more information about this contract, visit http://ucnet.universityofcalifornia.edu/labor/bargaining-units/ix/contract.html.
The School of Law is interested in candidates who are committed to the highest standards of teaching excellence and professional activities, and to the development of a campus that supports equality and diversity. The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age or protected veteran status. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy, see http://policy.ucop.edu/doc/4000376/NondiscrimAffirmAct.
Wednesday, February 24, 2021
Willamette University College of Law, located in Salem, Oregon, invites applications for a full-time, year-round clinical faculty position for the 2021-2022 academic year. The structure of the clinical faculty position is flexible and may be tenure track, programmatic-tenure track, or non-tenure track with a long-term contract. The area of legal focus for the clinical hire will be primarily defined by the interest of the successful candidate joining our program. Primary responsibility of the faculty member will be to supervise and assist law students with direct client representation, case management, client interviewing and counseling, fact investigation, legal research, and oral and written advocacy. Applicants must have a J.D., current admission to the Oregon bar or the ability to waive into the Oregon bar, and at least three years of relevant practice and/or teaching experience.
In employment, as in education, WUCL is committed to achieving excellence through cultural and social diversity of our faculty, staff, and students. WUCL believes this commitment to diversity is key to our success as a community. We are especially eager to receive applications from people of color and other underrepresented minorities, women, LGBTQI+ individuals, veterans, people with disabilities, and others with experience, backgrounds and viewpoints that will add to our collective goal of working towards a more inclusive, equitable, and diverse community.For more information on the current clinical law program at WUCL, please see here.To apply: please click here to be redirected to Willamette’s Workday website.
Tuesday, February 23, 2021
Fordham University School of Law
Managing Director of the Clinical Programs
The Managing Director of the Law School’s Clinical Program oversees the operations and administrative functions for the Law School’s nationally ranked Clinical Program that serves approximately 250 students each year. The Managing Director reports to and works with the Associate Dean for Experiential Learning (“Associate Dean”) and the Faculty Director of Clinical Programs (“Clinical Director”), in collaboration with the Senior Administrative Director, clinical faculty, support staff and clinical students, to deliver the highest quality legal services to the clients of Lincoln Square Legal Services, Inc., the Clinical Program’s incorporated non-profit law firm. The Clinical Program is committed to becoming an anti-racist program, and the Managing Director will help to ensure that the Clinical Program can achieve this goal. The Managing Director assists in creating and sustaining a dynamic culture within the Clinical Program of service to others, especially to LSLS clients and the Law School’s students. The Managing Director is deeply engaged in the educational and public interest mission of the Clinical Program.
Teaching Immigration Law: Law School Clinics in the US and UK, March 18, 2021
Please join us for a discussion on legal education, immigration law, and clinical law teaching. Hear our fantastic speakers who teach in immigration law clinics in US- and UK-based law schools discuss the rewards and challenges of clinical legal education, and participate in the exchange of knowledge and ideas. This event is being organised by Jennifer Koh (University of Irvine, California; University of Washington) and Devyani Prabhat (University of Bristol Law School).
Judith Carter, Liverpool Law School
Linus Chan, Director of the Detainee Rights Clinic at the University of Minnesota School of Law
Lindsay Harris, University of District Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law
Fatma Marouf, Texas A&M University School of Law
Sheona York, Kent Law School
Monday, February 22, 2021
Via Prof. Anna Welch:
Visiting Professor of Law - 2 Positions
2021-2022 Academic Year
The University of Maine School of Law, in the coastal city of Portland, Maine, invites applications for two full-time Visiting Professor of Law positions to teach Criminal Law or Property Law for the 2021-2022 academic year. The visiting appointments may be at the Professor, Associate Professor, or Assistant Professor level. Successful candidates will be eligible to apply for a tenured or tenure-track position starting in the 2022-2023 academic year. Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. Members of minority groups, women, and others whose background would contribute to the diversity of the Law School are encouraged to apply.
Review of applications will begin immediately. To ensure full consideration, we encourage you to submit materials by March 19, 2021. You may email any questions to email@example.com. Applications, however, must be submitted via HireTouch. Position(s) will remain open until successful candidates are hired.
Monday, February 8, 2021
Please see the announcement below from the Wake Forest Law Review's 2021 Spring Symposium on Secondary Trauma in the Legal Profession. So many folks in the Clinical community have written on this important topic, including but certainly not limited to Deeya Haldar & Sarah Katz, Amy Kimpel, Brittany Stringfellow-Otey, and Ron Tyler. This conference will bring together experts across disciplines to discuss secondary trauma in lawyering. Here is the conference agenda and announcement:
"The Wake Forest Law Review 2021 Spring Symposium will address the traumas that lawyers as well as non-lawyers face as a direct result of the legal system, the enhanced impact of secondary trauma with regard to race, and how lawyers can take leadership to address the issues associated with secondary trauma in legal professions.
In the legal profession, we represent people who have been traumatized by crime, abuse, environment, or even the legal system itself. Lawyers, judges, and participants are at risk of suffering from “secondary trauma” as a result of the work. The effects can include burnout, fatigue, depression, family life disruptions, and substance abuse, among other things. The traumatic effects have almost certainly been exacerbated by the pandemic and the social and political unrest of the last year. There are ways out, ways to be resilient. Awareness of the risk of secondary trauma is the first step.
Panel 1: The Risk of Secondary Trauma in the Legal Profession and Increasing Awareness (9:00 A.M.–10:00 A.M.)
This panel will start with an introduction to the program and will feature a description of secondary trauma and its significance as well as testimonials from individuals who have directly experienced the effects of secondary trauma, including lawyers and those on the periphery of the legal profession. Testimonials will be given by Eilene Zimmerman, author of Smacked: A Story of White Collar Ambition, Addiction, and Tragedy; Robbie Grier, the jury foreman from a Charlotte death penalty case; and Lt. Col. Andrea Hall, a U.S. Air Force JAG who defended sex abuse cases. This panel will be moderated by Professor Mark Rabil from the Wake Forest University School of Law.
Panel 2: Secondary Trauma Studies of Lawyers & Judges (10:05 A.M.–11:05 A.M.)
This panel will take an academic look at secondary trauma and introduce research studies demonstrating the impact of secondary trauma across different legal fields. Associate Professor Lindsay M. Harris from the University of the District of Columbia, David A. Clarke School of Law will discuss a study of secondary trauma focused on immigration attorneys. Professor Mark Rabil from the Wake Forest University School of Law, Dr. Stephannie Walker Seaton, from the Wake Forest School of Medicine, and Kimberly Wiseman, M.S. from the Wake Forest School of Medicine, will discuss another study of secondary trauma focused on capital defense attorneys. Finally, Dr. Dawn McQuiston from Wofford College will discuss a study in which students are interviewing judges in North and South Carolina about their experiences in the courtroom with different types of cases, sources of judicial stress, and stress management. Dr. McQuiston will also serve as the moderator of this discussion.
Panel 3: Practices to Reduce the Risk of Secondary Trauma (11:10 A.M.–12:10 P.M.)
This panel will discuss practices that the legal profession can employ to reduce the risks of secondary trauma such as creating spaces for quiet time for meditation or contemplation, critical debriefing, physical activity, mindfulness practice, retreats, and structural reforms that foster self-care. This panel will also discuss the importance of beginning to increase awareness and teach practices to reduce risk during legal education. The speakers featured on this panel will include Katherine Porterfield, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist at the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture; Mark Godsey, a former prosecutor who is now the director of the Ohio Innocence Project and a professor at the University of Cincinnati College of Law; Donna Mayerson, Ph.D., who has worked alongside Professor Godsey, and Cheryl Niccum, a social worker who works with US Attorneys to prosecute sex abuse, pornography, and human trafficking cases. Professor Mark Rabil will serve as the moderator of this discussion.
Panel 4: The Intersection Between Secondary Traumatic Effects and Race (1:00 PM–2:30 P.M.)
Secondary trauma has an enhanced impact when race and the law intersect. The history of racial injustice in America has been highlighted by recent events, and it is important now more than ever to understand and appreciate the impact the legal system has on people of color. This panel will feature Christina Swarns, the Executive Director of the Innocence Project; Henderson Hill, a senior attorney on the ACLU Capital Punishment Project; the Honorable Judge Gregory Weeks, a retired Superior Court Judge in North Carolina who has served as chair of the North Carolina Commission on Racial and Ethnic Disparities in the Criminal Justice System; Satana Deberry, Durham’s District Attorney; and the Honorable Judge Karen Eady-Williams, a Charlotte Superior Court Judge. Seema Saifee, a former Innocence Project Attorney and now a Quattrone Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania School of Law, will moderate this discussion.
Panel 5: Lawyers Taking Leadership (2:35 P.M.–3:35 P.M.)
The final panel of the Symposium will focus on the path forward toward addressing secondary trauma. The panel will focus on how the legal profession as a whole as well as individual lawyers can take steps to address these occupational hazards. This panel will feature the Honorable Carlton Reeves, a Federal Judge in the Southern District of Mississippi; the Honorable Cheri Beasley, former Chief Justice of the NC Supreme Court; and Derrick Johnson, President and CEO of the NAACP. Professor Kenneth Townsend from the Wake Forest University School of Law will moderate this discussion."
Here is the link to register: https://wakeforest-university.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_9GCjKamhT-K6QW_6W7nb_w
Thursday, February 4, 2021
We are excited to share that CLEA will again offer a FREE Virtual New Clinicians Conference on May 17-20, 2021.
Like last year's conference, which brought together more than 250 attendees, the 2021 CLEA Virtual New Clinicians Conference will convene over four days. Each day's program will begin at 11:00 a.m. Eastern and conclude at 1:30 or 2:00 p.m. Eastern. Our varied conference format will include live and asynchronous webinar programming, concurrent sessions, and facilitated small group discussions. We also expect to offer some fun networking opportunities, including an evening social event during the week of the conference. Session topics will include:
Foundations of Clinical Teaching: An Overview of Best Practices
Racial Justice in the Classroom and in Practice
Technology Innovations in Clinical Teaching and Practice
Teaching Movement Lawyering
Clinical Teaching and Practice During Crisis
Pedagogy Deep-Dive: Clinic Design
Pedagogy Deep-Dive: Externship Design
Plus: Case Rounds, Supervision, and More!
We will be back in touch later this month to share a detailed schedule and information for how you can register to attend the 2021 CLEA Virtual New Clinicians Conference. For now, please SAVE THE DATES (May 17-20, 2021) and do not hesitate to contact us or any of the CLEA New Clinicians Committee members identified below with questions.
We look forward to “seeing” you in May for the 2021 CLEA Virtual New Clinicians!
Lisa Martin and Danny Schaffzin
On behalf of the CLEA New Clinicians Committee:
Lisa Martin (University of South Carolina) (Co-Chair)
Danny Schaffzin (University of Memphis) (Co-Chair)
Jeff Baker (Pepperdine)
Kathryn Banks (Washington University in St. Louis)
Lauren Bartlett (St. Louis University)
Christine Cerniglia (Stetson)
Crisanne Hazen (Harvard)
Rachael Kohl (Michigan)
Praveen Kosuri (Penn)
C. Benjie Louis (Hofstra)
Nickole Miller (University of Baltimore)
Sue Schechter (Berkeley)
Shonda Sibley (Temple University)
Anita Sinha (American University)
Kele Stewart (Miami)
Wendy Vaughn (Northern Illinois University)
Monday, January 25, 2021
UC Irvine School of Law: Mysun Foundation Clinical Fellow (Environmental Justice)
Mysun Foundation Clinical Fellow, Environmental Law Clinic in the School of Law: To apply: https://recruit.ap.uci.
The University of California, Irvine School of Law invites applications for the position of Mysun Foundation Clinical Fellow in its Environmental Law Clinic (ELC). The fellowship is designed to provide an attorney who has a strong interest in environmental justice with mentorship, to help the attorney to launch a career in clinical teaching, or serve as a bridge to a career in public interest environmental justice work.
UCI Law enjoys a dynamic clinical program already ranked highly on nationwide surveys. The ELC is one of several core clinics at UC Irvine that meet the School of Law’s clinical requirement. The nature of the ELC’s environmental justice projects varies depending on client need, appropriateness of project for clinical teaching, student and faculty interest, and resource availability, but projects will likely include a mix of advocacy, counseling, and policy matters in multiple fora.
The Mysun Foundation Clinical Fellow will work under the direct supervision of the ELC director. Working with the Director, the Mysun Foundation Clinical Fellow will mentor and work closely with students in the representation of disenfranchised and marginalized communities, and will participate in program development including community lawyering and outreach. The Mysun Foundation Clinical Fellow will also have opportunities for teaching within the ELC, including assisting with the teaching of the ELC seminar.
The Mysun Foundation Clinical Fellow is expected to be a vital part not only of the ELC, but also of the UCI Clinical Law Program, and the law school’s intellectual life more generally. As such, the Mysun Foundation Clinical Fellow will receive mentoring, and can expect support in terms of career development.
Candidates for the position must have:
(1) a J.D. from an A.B.A.-accredited law school;
(2) a strong interest in working on environmental justice issues;
(3) strong written, oral, and interpersonal communication skills, including experience working with people from diverse backgrounds ;
(4) the ability to think imaginatively and critically about approaches to environmental justice problems;
(5) the ability to work collaboratively with students, faculty, and administrators;
(6) the ability to work collaboratively with community groups, environmental justice communities, and environmental justice organizations;
(7) a strong work ethic, and demonstrated understanding of the applicable ethical rules; and;
(8) the ability to juggle multiple competing priorities and meet firm deadlines.
Nature of the Appointment
The Mysun Foundation Clinical Fellow will report to the Environmental Law Clinic Director, and work closely ELC students. The position is a full time, twelve-month staff appointment, with the possibility of extension for an additional year, but not to exceed 2 years total.
Salary is up to $80,000/yr. depending on experience. The ELC Fellow will be eligible for UC benefits.
All applicants must submit a cover letter describing their background and specific interest in the Fellowship, a list of three references, an Inclusive Excellence Activities Statement, and a resume or curriculum vitae using UC Irvine’s on-line application system, RECRUIT, located at: https://recruit.ap.uci.
UCI Law is currently working from remotely, and will conduct its interviews remotely.
“The University of California, Irvine is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer advancing inclusive excellence. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, age, protected veteran status, or other protected categories covered by the UC nondiscrimination policy.”
- Resume or Curriculum Vitae
- Inclusive Excellence Activities Statement - Statement addressing how past and/or potential contributions to inclusive excellence will advance UCI's Commitment to Inclusive Excellence. See our guidance for writing an inclusive excellence activities statement.
- Complete Law School Transcript
- Writing Sample
- Cover Letter/Statement of Interest in Environmental Justice Issues and this Fellowship
- 3 required (contact information only)
To apply: UC Irvine’s on-line application system, RECRUIT, located at: https://recruit.ap.uci.
Thursday, January 21, 2021
COLLEGE OF LAW DEAN
THE UNIVERSITY OF TULSA
COLLEGE OF LAW
The University of Tulsa (TU) seeks a candidate beginning July 1, 2021, to serve as the Dean of the University of Tulsa College of Law. The Dean is the chief academic officer of the College and provides strategic vision and operational leadership for all aspects of the academic enterprise; supports and promotes excellence in faculty scholarship and teaching; and preserves a collaborative and transparent environment for students, faculty, administrators, staff, and alumni. The Dean supports the College's fundraising and development efforts, develops, and promotes strategic plans for the College, and works with law school faculty, administrators, and other program directors in advancing the broad interests of the College. The Dean must work collegially with faculty, staff, and fellow members of the President’s Leadership Team and Deans' Council, other colleges, alumni, and community members to advance the academic mission of the College and the University.
We seek an intellectually curious, thoughtful, and forward-looking person who can lead a complex institution, raise funds, and identify opportunities in the challenges presently facing legal education.
MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Juris Doctorate degree or equivalent; academic and professional credentials necessary for eligibility for a tenured faculty appointment
A more detailed position description can be found here: https://utulsa.edu/jobs/
The University of Tulsa seeks to recruit and retain talented students, faculty, and staff from diverse backgrounds. The University of Tulsa is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and encourages qualified candidates across all group demographics to apply. The University does not discriminate on the basis of personal status or group characteristic including, but not limited to race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, sex, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, genetic information, ancestry, or marital status.
Please submit a cover letter addressing the candidate’s experience, qualifications, education, and vision for the future of the College of Law, and a CV to: The University of Tulsa, Office of Human Resources, 800 S Tucker Drive, Tulsa, OK 74104 or submit online at utulsa.edu/job-application.
Applicants who progress in the search process will be asked to provide five references, accompanying letters of recommendation, a diversity statement, and official transcripts. Application review will begin on February 1 and continue until the position is filled.
Confidential inquiries and expressions of interest may be addressed to Search Committee Chair, Elizabeth McCormick, at LAWsearchchair@utulsa.edu.
Thursday, January 14, 2021
Via Prof. Stacy Caplow:
Tenured or Tenure Track Position
Brooklyn Law School
Brooklyn Law School invites applications for the Director of our immigration clinic (now known as the Safe Harbor Project). The Law School is looking for an outstanding teacher, lawyer, scholar, and leader who will join our faculty and our clinical program. We are seeking candidates who either currently meet or will soon meet our specialized tenure standard.
The Safe Harbor Project began in 1997. During that time, BLS students have represented hundreds of clients in a wide range of types of immigration matters, although its primary docket consists of applications for asylum and other humanitarian relief. More than 350 students have participated in the clinic, many of whom now are leaders in the immigration lawyer’s community in New York or who continue to represent immigration clients pro bono.
The Director will have full control over the direction, focus, design and priorities of the Clinic. The Director will be responsible for overseeing every aspect of the Clinic’s work including developing the docket, supervising clinic students and teaching the required seminar. The Director also will also teach at least one non-clinical course per year.
The Director will join our accomplished group of clinical faculty members who teach in our eight in-house clinics and direct our externships. The Law School strongly supports, and is known for, its clinics, taking great pride in their accomplishments. This year marked the 50th anniversary of clinic programs at BLS.
The Law School’s commitment to public interest and public service is longstanding and deep so that the Director also will have opportunities to mentor student pro bono organizations and to participate in local, state and national projects relating to immigration. The Law School supports and encourages the scholarship of all faculty through generous summer stipends, research assistance and pre-tenure leaves.
Brooklyn Law School, founded in 1901, is located in one of the most diverse and vibrant communities in New York. In the heart of booming downtown Brooklyn, the Law School is within walking distance of all state and federal courts. BLS students are hardworking, enterprising, always questioning and eager to participate in the “real world.”
A candidate for this position must have a JD from an ABA-accredited institution, a strong academic record, a current license to practice law, at least five years’ experience in practice, with experience as a clinical teacher strongly preferred. The candidate should be admitted to or eligible for immediate admission to the New York State and/or federal bars.
We seek a new colleague who is creative, curious and self-motivated with an ability to thrive in an academic environment and who has a demonstrated passion for social justice advocacy.
We hope to find a new Director to take over the clinic no later than fall 2021 but the position will remain open until our search is successful.
Please send a cover letter, resume and writing sample to Professor Julian Arato, firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Clinical Faculty Position.”
Applications are welcome, and will be considered on a rolling basis. We will begin considering applications on February 8, 2021, and can only guarantee full consideration of materials received before that date.
Salary, rank, and title will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.
Brooklyn Law School is an equal opportunity institution that operates in compliance with applicable laws and regulations. BLS does not discriminate on the bases of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, pregnancy, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, marital status, personal appearance, income, veteran status,, an individual’s genetic information or any other bases under federal or local laws in its programs and activities.
Wednesday, January 13, 2021
Via Dean Molly Stafford:
[T]he University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law, is hiring an Assistant Professor of Lawyering Skills to direct its Homeless Advocacy Clinic. The clinic will join the three other clinics that form Community Legal Services (CLS): Bankruptcy, Immigration, and Elder & Health Law. CLS has been providing pro bono services to our Sacramento community for over 40 years. CLS has been providing “socially distanced” in-person services to vulnerable populations during the pandemic, as it has been deemed an essential service.
The Homeless Advocacy Clinic has been operating for the last two years as part of the Elder & Health Law Clinic. CLS has received a grant to now enable it to spin off the Homeless Advocacy Clinic as a stand-alone clinic. If you are anyone you know is interested in applying, here is the link: 
Monday, January 4, 2021
Coinciding with the AALS Annual meeting, both CLEA and the AALS Section on Clinical Legal Education have published their regular newsletters this week. The newsletters cover different, but complimentary, beats. CLEA focuses on individual clinicians, and the AALS newsletter focuses on programs. They both include important information from their respective leadership teams and insightful pieces from clinical law profs.
Thursday, December 17, 2020
Via Prof. Yael Cannon:
The Health Justice Alliance hires one individual to serve as a clinical teaching fellow and supervising attorney each year, for a two-year term.
Fellows have several areas of responsibility, with an increasing role as the fellowship progresses. First, fellows supervise students in direct representation cases, as co-supervisors with experienced fellows and faculty and then on their own.
Second, fellows co-supervise one or more project teams of students.
Third, the fellows and faculty share responsibility for teaching seminar sessions. Fourth, fellows share in the administrative and case handling responsibilities of the clinic.
Finally, fellows participate in a clinical pedagogy seminar and other activities designed to support an interest in clinical teaching and legal education.
Monday, December 14, 2020
UCLA LAW's Williams Institute and Experiential Education Program seek applications for the Sears Clinical Law Teaching Fellowship for 2021-2024. Applicants who intend to pursue a career as a clinical professor and/or public interest lawyer engaged in legislative lawyering and policy work are invited to apply if their practice or research interests are focused on the intersections of sexual and reproductive health, LGBTQ rights, and racial and economic justice.
We invite applications from those practicing or working in law, policy, and other disciplinary traditions. Applicants must have a clear legislative lawyering and/or policy focus, be interested in experiential teaching, and should have career or research interests that center questions of sexual and reproductive health, sexuality (broadly defined) and gender identity, and racial and economic justice. We are particularly interested in candidates who have an interest in researching religious liberty arguments to limit both reproductive rights and LGBTQ non-discrimination protections. We seek candidates who will bring our two programs together, infusing each with the ideas and work of the other.
The fellowship offers opportunities for experiential teaching and research designed to prepare the fellow to seek a permanent or tenure-track experiential faculty position at a law school, or an advanced position as a public interest lawyer focused on public policy or legislative lawyering. The fellow will be expected to co-teach or teach in experiential courses at UCLA Law for at least one semester each year of the three-year fellowship. During the summer and semesters when the fellow is not teaching, the fellow would be fully engaged with policy and scholarly research projects. The law school will provide teaching mentorship, as well as research support and faculty guidance on research and writing projects.
The law teaching fellowship programs of The Williams Institute and the Experiential Education Program at UCLA Law are some of the oldest in the nation. Together, they have supported over twenty law teaching fellows to secure tenure track appointments at law schools nationwide. Past fellows have secured faculty positions at top law schools including UCLA, UC Davis, UC Irvine, Wisconsin, and Yale.
Eligibility and Qualifications
UCLA School of Law seeks candidates committed to the highest standards of teaching, scholarship and professional activities, and to a campus climate, that supports equality and diversity. A fellowship candidate should possess (or expect to possess by June 30, 2021): a JD or equivalent legal training; a strong academic record; at least two years of practice experience (more preferred); admission to any U.S. bar, California preferred; excellent analytical and writing skills; an aptitude for student supervision; a collegial style; and demonstrated interest and background in sexual and reproductive health and sexual orientation and gender identity law and policy. In addition, we welcome candidates who possess graduate training in other disciplines, or other personal or professional background that informs their research and teaching interests. The fellowship is for three years, based upon satisfactory completion of each year of the fellowship. Those with previous postdoctoral scholar experience will be limited to no more than five total years of postdoctoral experience including time spent at UCLA.
Terms of the Fellowship
The Sears Clinical Law Teaching Fellow will be appointed for the academic year beginning July 1, 2021 and must be in residence in Los Angeles at UCLA. The fellowship is renewable for a second and third year, contingent on the fellow’s satisfactory progress. The fellowship offers a salary of approximately $70,000 per year and full benefits.
The fellow’s responsibilities include:
- co-teaching or teaching at least one experiential course annually;
engaging in substantial public policy or academic writing each year;
assisting with Williams Institute and Experiential Education programs, such as symposia, journal, moot court competitions, panels, and workshops;
mentoring J.D. and L.L.M. students, both formally and informally;
participating in the intellectual life of the law school by attending faculty workshops, specialized colloquia, and the like.
Confidential review of applications, nominations, and expressions of interest will begin immediately and continue until an appointment is made. To ensure full consideration, applications should be received by Wednesday, January 20, 2021 but will be considered thereafter until the position is filled.
Please go to https://recruit.apo.ucla.edu/JPF06028 to submit an application. A complete application includes the following materials:
- cover letter summarizing your qualifications for the fellowship, including any past and/or potential contributions to equity, diversity and inclusion through research, teaching, and/or public service;
statement discussing your teaching, practice, and research interests of no more than 3,000 words;
law school and other post-graduate transcripts;
writing sample, either published or in-progress;
names and contact information of three references prepared to write a letter of recommendation upon request. At least one should be a professor familiar with your scholarly and/or teaching potential.
Questions via email may be addressed to Assistant Dean Allison Korn at email@example.com.
The Sears Clinical Law Teaching Fellowship was made possible through generous gifts by Jim Hooker, Chuck Williams, Planned Parenthood of Los Angeles, and a number of other donors. The Williams Institute is dedicated to conducting rigorous, independent research on sexual orientation and gender identity law and public policy. A think tank at UCLA Law, the Williams Institute produces high-quality research with real-world relevance and disseminates it to judges, legislators, policymakers, media, and the public. UCLA School of Law’s Experiential Education Program offers extensive and rigorous practical training for students interested in litigation, transactional, regulatory, and public interest work. Existing substantively-focused law clinic courses include Community Economic Development, Criminal Defense, Documentary Film, Immigrant Family Legal, International Human Rights, Tribal Legal Development, and Veterans Justice.
The University of California seeks to recruit and retain a diverse workforce as a reflection of our commitment to serve the people of California, to maintain the excellence of the University, and to offer our students richly varied disciplines, perspectives and ways of knowing and learning.
The University of California is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender, gender expression, gender identity, gender transition status, pregnancy, physical or mental disability, medical condition (cancer-related or genetic characteristics), genetic information (including family medical history), ancestry, marital status, age, sexual orientation, citizenship, or service in the uniformed services, including protected veterans. For the complete University of California nondiscrimination and affirmative action policy, see: UC Nondiscrimination &Affirmative Action Policy at https://policy.ucop.edu/doc/4000376/DiscHarassAffirmAction.
Los Angeles, California
More information about this recruitment: https://law.ucla.edu/
- Cover Letter - A letter summarizing your qualifications for the fellowship, including any past and/or potential contributions to equity, diversity and inclusion through research, teaching, and/or public service
- Statement of Interests - A statement discussing your teaching, practice, and research interests of no more than 3,000 words
- Resume or C.V. - Your most recently updated resume or C.V.
- Law School and other Post-Graduate Transcripts
- Writing Sample (either published or in-progress)
- List of References - Names and contact information of three references prepared to write a letter of recommendation upon request. At least one should be a professor familiar with your scholarly and/or teaching potential.
- Statement on Contributions to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion - An EDI Statement describes a faculty candidate’s past, present, and future (planned) contributions to equity, diversity, and inclusion. To learn more about how UCLA thinks about contributions to equity, diversity, and inclusion, please review our Sample Guidance for Candidates and related EDI Statement FAQ document.
- 3 letters of reference required
Thursday, December 10, 2020
The Clinical Section is proud to announce that Professors Nancy Maurer of Albany Law School and Susan Bennett of American University Washington College of Law are this years’ recipients of the William Pincus Award. As many of you know, the Pincus Award honors individuals, groups or institutions for effecting an outstanding contribution to the cause of clinical legal education. Attached and below you will find more information about our amazing awardees.
Nancy and Susan will be appropriately feted at the Section’s Award Ceremony on January 5th from 12:15 to 1:15. The Section is planning an exciting virtual celebration. Although we won’t all be together, zoom means, at least, that more can take part, and we hope you all attend.
Please join me in extending a hearty congratulations to our amazing Pincus Award recipients!
Susan Bennett, American University Washington College of Law
Professor Bennett has made substantial and enduring contributions to clinical legal education and the advancement of justice. She founded and directs the American University Washington College of Law Community and Economic Development Law Clinic, through which students provide transactional representation to non–profit organizations, small businesses, and affordable housing cooperatives in under-served neighborhoods in the D.C. metro area.
Professor Bennett has helped people around the region organize, galvanize and advocate for their communities, and prosper. Many of her clients are now bedrock institutions in their communities, providing opportunity to those who have historically been denied such access. In sharing this work with her students, she has helped launch a great number of public interest careers and brought WCL students and the diverse communities of the DC area together.
Among Professor Bennett’s clients over the years are community organizations, entrepreneurs and small businesses, and worker and housing cooperatives. In representing limited equity housing cooperatives, Professor Bennett has worked to preserve this important source of permanently affordable housing for low-income DC residents. Both her teaching and work have had a particular focus on the legacy of residential housing segregation in and around DC. In addition to representing limited equity housing cooperatives and affordable housing developments and advocacy organizations, Professor Bennett works with individual homeowners to remove racially restrictive housing covenants from their deeds. Professor Bennett is keenly aware of the history of the communities in which she practices and the connection between her work and racial justice permeates her client representation, her teaching, and her scholarship.
Over the course of her career, Professor Bennett has produced a substantial and highly influential a body of work relating to public interest lawyering. These writings appear in a variety of prominent journals, including the Clinical Law Review, Fordham Urban Law Journal, Michigan Journal of Law Reform, Wisconsin Law Review, and the Yale Law Journal. In these pieces, Professor Bennett has addressed topics including the role of poverty lawyers, attorney-client relations in the context of community lawyering, the practice of “long-haul lawyering,” public housing communities, and welfare reform. Her scholarship elevates the stories of her clients and the communities from which they hail. For the clinical community (and others), she also co-authored Community Economic Development Law: A Text for Engaged Learning, published in 2012 by Carolina Press.
Beyond her service to the clinical community as an editor (since 2016) of the Clinical Law Review, Professor Bennett has held many leadership positions within the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) Section on Poverty Law, including serving as Chair and Executive Committee member. She also bridged the worlds of academia and practice in her leadership of the Legal Educators Division of the ABA Forum on Affordable Housing and Community Development Law. And from 2007-2010 she served on the American Bar Association’s Commission on Homelessness and Poverty.
At WCL, Professor Bennett is an unwavering supporter of public interest law students, and has designed and supported programs to support them, like helping found the Public Interest Alumni Advisory Board, mentoring Public Interest/Service Scholars (PIPS), and serving as a faculty advisor for the law school’s Office of Public Interest, which is responsible for oversight of the schools Pro Bono Honors Pledge Program. Most recently, she laid the groundwork for the creation of a new Tenant Opportunity to Purchase Act (TOPA) law student bono project in collaboration with DC’s Housing Counseling Services.
Nancy Maurer, Albany Law School
Professor Maurer’s contributions to the field of clinical legal education over her nearly 40 years of teaching are tremendous, multi-faceted and far-reaching. From the beginning, Professor Maurer actively participated in the activities of the national clinical legal education community, eventually assuming leadership roles.
With the 1983 creation of Albany Law School’s Disability Law Clinic, Professor Maurer founded Albany Law School’s nationally-recognized and renowned clinical legal education program. The Disability Law Clinic was one of the first law school clinics in the country to teach law students through the direct representation of individuals with disabilities. It evolved into a broader Civil Rights and Disabilities Law Clinic during the 1990s, and Professor Maurer has played important roles in other expansions of the clinical program at Albany Law School. She also developed and co-taught Albany Law School’s first Introduction to Lawyering course, part of our cutting-edge Lawyering Program. The Lawyering Program has all the hallmarks of clinical legal education: students, in small firms, “represent” parties in a year-long simulated legal dispute. In this way, students are introduced to the legal system, legal ethics, and the skills and values of the profession.
Professor Maurer’s contributions to the world of externships are exceptional. At Albany, she grew and redesigned what is known as the Field Placement Clinic, designing and implementing the Learning from Practice seminar. She served as co-chair of the AALS Clinical Section’s Externship Committee. And her contributions to LEARNING FROM PRACTICE: A TEXT FOR EXPERIENTIAL LEGAL EDUCATION, have influenced the hundreds of students in field placements who read her work. Her work shaped how several generations of law students participated in and approached law school studies through clinic-based, experiential programs both at Albany and nationally. Moreover, proceeds from the sale of LEARNING FROM PRACTICE further clinical legal education programs, with the co-authors donating over $16,000 in royalties to the Clinical Legal Education Association per diem project following its first year of sales, and over $8,000 in its second year.
Her scholarship in the field of clinical education and disability rights alike have also had tremendous impact. The DISABILITY LAW AND PRACTICE SERIES, which she co-authored, was the 2017 recipient of the Association for Continuing Legal Education’s “Award of Professional Excellence” in publication. In January 2018, the New York State Bar Association honored her for her service as Co-Editor of the DISABILITY LAW AND PRACTICE Series.
Outside the academy, and practice, Professor Maurer helped found and now chairs the board of directors of Disability Rights New York, Inc., a prominent legal services and advocacy nonprofit organization in New York State. She has been very involved in women’s issues serving on the board of the Capital District Women’s Bar Association and Albany Law School’s Kate Stoneman Committee, honoring the first women admitted to the bar in New York State. Most recently, she joined the board of Legal Advocacy Equity Firm, Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving individuals who cannot qualify for free legal services, but need civil legal services at reduced rates.
Finally, she continues to innovate and respond to the needs of her students, clinical legal education, and the community at large. Most recently, she has focused on racial justice, finding new placements and designing anti-racism training for field placement supervisors.
In short, Professor Maurer’ work in program development and implementation, scholarship, service, and in the advancement of justice are far-reaching and long-lasting.
University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law Innocence Clinic
The Midwest Innocence Project (MIP) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit legal defense organization dedicated to representing wrongfully convicted prison inmates in our five-state region (MO, KS, NE, IA, AR) who can prove their innocence through the use of DNA testing and other newly discovered evidence. The MIP seeks a candidate for a full-time Supervising Attorney position in Kansas City, MO. This position reports directly to MIP’s Executive Director and is responsible for effectuating the following job responsibilities.
The Supervising Attorney position will be responsible for directing the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law’s Innocence Clinic and teaching the Wrongful Conviction Course. The clinic is responsible for reviewing applications arising from convictions involving forensic science and occurring within Missouri for the instances where DNA could prove an applicant’s innocence. The Supervising Attorney will work with MIP staff; supervise law student in the clinic; engage in case investigations; and participate in litigation and case preparation. This is a fulltime grant-funded position with a two-year term.
This position requires excellent interpersonal communication skills, strong research and writing skills; experience in computer- assisted legal research; word processing capability; time management skills; and the ability to understand and manage complex factual and legal issues and supervise intake processes. The Supervising Attorney must maintain an active caseload while training law students and working with partner attorneys in conducting records collection and investigation. The Supervising Attorney must have a strong capacity and experience in direct litigation and providing oversight for litigation processes.
- Serve as an adjunct professor directing the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law’s Innocence Clinic and teaching the Wrongful Conviction Course
- Train and supervise law students
- Review incoming files and maintain caseload of prospective innocence cases
- Investigate claims of actual innocence in the field and/or supervise the work of an investigator in the field, including locating potential evidence for DNA testing
- Engage in legal writing of DNA motions, habeas petitions, post-convictions motions, and case memoranda.
- Supervise law students in case review, investigation, records collection, and case litigation.
- As needed, participate in litigation preparation and case preparation on activated cases where MIP has been retained as counsel.
Position Skills include
- Juris Doctorate from an accredited law school
- Bar license from Missouri, or the ability to become licensed, and familiarity with state and federal court systems in Missouri
- Experience with teaching, coaching, or the development of skills in others
- At least three years of experience working in criminal defense or post-conviction/habeas corpus litigation is preferred
- Experience and knowledge with issues surrounding forensic science
- Computer Skills including Microsoft Office, Clio, and other relevant tools and applications.
The selected candidate must be detail oriented and have superior organizational, oral communication, writing and interpersonal skills. The ideal candidate must be a self-starter, passionate about criminal justice issues, and dedicated to training and educating individuals on issues regarding wrongful convictions.
Please send a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and a list of references to Tricia Rojo Bushnell at firstname.lastname@example.org. Salary range is $55,000-$80,000 DOE. Medical and dental insurance provided. Applications will be considered until the position is filled.
The Midwest Innocence Project is an equal opportunity employer and strives for diversity among its applicant pool as well as within its staff and board. We strongly encourage people from all backgrounds, especially racial, ethnic, gender and sexual orientation minorities, veterans, people with disabilities, and smart people with non-linear/non-traditional experience and educational backgrounds to apply for this position. Most importantly, no matter their background, the person selected for this position must embrace, advocate for, and deeply value equity, diversity, and inclusivity.
Tuesday, December 8, 2020
Tenure-Track or Tenured Professor of Law and
Director of the Ronald A. Peterson Law Clinic
SEATTLE UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF LAW
Seattle University School of Law invites applications and nominations for Director of the Ronald A. Peterson Law Clinic to begin in the 2021-22 academic year. The Law School is looking for an outstanding teacher, lawyer, scholar, and leader who will advance our vision of a fully-integrated experiential learning curriculum at the forefront of our institutional commitment to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion and to combat structural inequality, including racism, within the academy, the legal profession, and society. We are seeking candidates who either currently meet or will soon meet our unitary tenure standard. Salary, rank, and title (i.e., Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, or Professor) will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.
The Director’s responsibilities will include: (1) administration and oversight of all clinics and the Externship Program (which has its own faculty Director); (2) supporting full-time and adjunct clinical faculty; (3) supervising administrative staff; and (4) developing and implementing policies and procedures to ensure the clinic meets all professional and academic standards. The Director’s faculty responsibilities will include teaching at least one clinical course each year in their area of expertise as part of a 0.5 FTE teaching assignment and producing scholarship consistent with our faculty tenure standards. We will look to the Director to sustain our long tradition of regional and national leadership in clinical education and to be a powerful voice for clinical education within and beyond our institution.
Consistently ranked one of the Top Twenty programs by US News and World Report, the Peterson Law Clinic typically offers courses in as many as twelve different subject areas in a single academic year. We regularly offer clinics in civil-rights litigation (in conjunction with the Korematsu Center for Law and Equality), juvenile criminal defense, workers’ rights advocacy, estate planning, small business advising, international human rights, immigration practice, and patent matters before the US Patent and Trademark Office.
Seattle University School of Law is committed to preparing great lawyers and leaders who make a difference for their clients and communities. We proudly and consistently attract the most diverse student body of any law school in the Pacific Northwest region (40% students of color in this year’s 1L class). Our commitment to academic distinction is grounded in our Jesuit Catholic tradition, one that encourages open inquiry, thoughtful reflection, and concern for personal growth. Innovation, creativity, and technological sophistication characterize our rigorous educational program, which prepares lawyers for a wide variety of successful careers in law, business, and public service.
Minimum Qualifications: JD from an ABA-accredited institution, a strong academic record, a current license to practice law, at least five years experience in practice, with experience as a clinical teacher strongly preferred. (We will consider applications from individuals without clinical teaching experience who have exceptional records of professional excellence, administration, and leadership.) The successful candidate will be expected to promptly obtain a license to practice in Washington once hired.
Founded in 1891, Seattle University is a Jesuit Catholic university located on a beautiful campus of more than 50 acres in the dynamic heart of Seattle. Our diverse and driven population is made up of more than 7,200 students enrolled in undergraduate and graduate programs within eight schools and colleges.
In support of its pursuit of academic and scholarly excellence, Seattle University is committed to creating a diverse community of students, faculty and staff that is dedicated to the fundamental principles of equal opportunity and treatment in education and employment regardless of age, color, disability, gender identity, national origin, political ideology, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status. The university encourages applications from, and nominations of, individuals whose differing backgrounds, beliefs, ideas and life experiences will further enrich the diversity of its educational community.
For best consideration, submit application, including cover letter, curriculum vitae, and a list of references, to https://www.seattleu.edu/careers/ by the close of business on January 15, 2021. Questions about the search process should be directed to Professor Paul Holland, email@example.com, Chair of the Faculty Appointments Committee.
Monday, December 7, 2020
By Jasmine Martinez, 3L at the University of Baltimore School of Law
Covid-19 has turned our world upside down to say the least. However, the world did not stop spinning. After lockdown, the world opened its doors to the restaurant around the corner, the gym you occasionally frequented, and even the courthouses of your state. Covid-19 has changed the legal field forever. I am more prepared to enter the legal field because of my experience as a student attorney in Bronfein Family Law Clinic at the University of Baltimore School of Law this past semester.
Looking back to August 2020, I was uneasy about what my experience in clinic would be like. I had the normal fears most student attorneys experience in clinic: not being good enough, failing my client, or failing my family expectations. However, my classmates and I also faced new challenges due to the pandemic. I wondered how I would build rapport with my clients over Zoom or successfully prepare them for court and advocate for their interests.
Today, as my time in clinic draws to a close, I am proud to say that none of my fears came true. My clinic partner, Shaye Reynolds, and I were able to creative problem solve and successfully advocate for our clients. The road to this success with our clients was not without obstacles or bumps in the road, but our experience in clinic taught us so much about the importance of preparation, flexibility, and resilience.
Challenges to client interactions
My classmates and I did not have a “traditional” clinic experience, to say the least. The pandemic kept us from having class and supervision meetings in-person. We learned, communicated, and collaborated on Zoom, Slack, e-mail, and WhatsApp. Our school’s Covid-19 regulations kept us from not only meeting for class in-person, but it also kept us from meeting with our clients in-person.
In clinic, we practice client-centered, trauma-informed lawyering. In-person interviews and meetings can be a big influence on the trust and rapport built between a client and their attorney. My partner and I had to think creatively about how to build this relationship in a remote environment where traditional tools like body language or even the simple act of offering someone a glass of water or tissue was not available.
With one of our clients, we were able to schedule video meetings. The video helped to mimic the face-to-face contact. We were able to build rapport and trust with our client by keeping eye-contact, checking in regularly, and allowing our client to take breaks when necessary. With another one of our clients, we primarily communicated over telephone. This was more challenging, but we found ways to learn more about our client and make sure they felt comfortable with us as their attorney.
Another challenge to remote lawyering this semester was collecting evidence. Rather than being able to gather documents from our client in-person, we had to have our client email the documents over and think about how address any authenticity concerns and maintain confidentiality. We learned to find loopholes where Covid-19 put barriers.
My experience in clinic this semester was not unique. Earlier this year, the ABA Journal interviewed clinic students across the country whose work has been affected by Covid-19. Daniel Barragan, a clinic student at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, explained how he had to share his WIFI connection at home with his four brothers and feared losing connection with his client. Others explained the challenges of using multiple tech platforms to communicate with clients, student attorneys, supervising faculty, and interpreters.
To compound all of this, we’ve had to consider how remoted lawyering in a pandemic impacts our ethical duties. Lisa R. Lifshitz urged readers in the ABA’s Business Law Today to think seriously about security of client data, the background of those on zoom, and the adequate and secure backup of the documents. There has been a worry about the security of client data with everything being over the internet.
The background of those on Zoom is not always controllable too. Just like our families have to share space, our clients are sharing space with their families. We always checked with our client by asking if there was anyone else in the room with them or if there were any possible interruptions. Furthermore, we had to consider the security and storage of client data and documents on our computers. In clinic we relied heavily on CLIO, our case management software, to store documents and send documents for client review and signature. CLIO surveys found that 89 percent of people believed courts have improved through technology. Sateesh Nori tells the Queen’s Daily Eagle that “[r]emote work can be more productive and rewarding, law practice need not be indentured servitude and flexibility is the bait that will lure and retain smart, dedicated lawyers.”
Clients have shared that they do not mind communicating virtually and do not view it as less of a service than meeting in person. Although, communicating virtually will never be the same, it has cut down on travel time for clients and also time off work. For example, our client got home around 5pm and was able to meet with us by video by 5:30pm. This likely would not have been possible if she had to take public transit to our school.
Challenges in the courtroom
One of our cases this semester actually went to trial. At the time, the Circuit Court for Baltimore City was hearing custody trials in-person. There were numerous measures we had to follow to keep everyone safe that complicated both our court preparation and the actual trial. We chose to get Covid-19 tested before court to ensure we were not endangering those in the court room.
When we made it to trial, the obstacles were not over. We arrived early to the courthouse to go through check in, which now takes a little longer because of Covid-19 regulations. We had to have our temperature taken, we were asked if we had Covid-19 symptoms, and we were told to social distance. After we made it through check in, we continued to social distance and wear our masks. It is a Covid-19 regulation in Maryland to wear a mask when in public places, like a courthouse.
Each one of us had to wear a mask during the whole trial. This was another one of the obstacles of trial. It was difficult to project our voices to be able to be heard by everyone in the room. Not only was it difficult to talk, but it was difficult to see emotions or gauge how our client was feeling. It was also uncomfortable and hot to wear the mask for over 4 hours, but we knew it was for the greater good and protection of others.
Despite these challenges, I am happy to report we won our case!
Celebrating our court victory! Photo used with client's permission.
This semester was a roller-coaster. However, the semester was also an incredible learning experience. I was able experience first-hand how the legal field is adapting to a “new normal” and develop skills and techniques that will serve me well in my legal career. Here are just a few tips and tricks for future student attorneys who will be navigating lawyering during a pandemic:
- Be intentional about your schedule. Make time for your clinic work and also make not to do your clinic work.
- Always clarify with your client what their preferences are when it comes to the case, how you communicate, and what times you meet.
- Challenge your assumptions and prepare to dig deeper for important facts and evidence, such as practicing active listening, asking open-ended questions, and utilizing the funnel interviewing technique.
- Create small, internal deadlines. This helped me stay on track for our big goals without being stressed.
- Communicate!!! Speak frequently with your partner, your supervisor, and your client.
In conclusion, Covid-19 has changed my life and the way I have learned to lawyer. I have learned how to work around not being able to meet with my client in person and how to create a client-attorney relationship without it as well. I have learned how to effectively advocate for my client using client-centered lawyering. Melina Healey stated in the ABA article that we (clinic students) are getting more experience communicating with our clients remotely. I would definitely agree. I will be more prepared entering the legal field post-pandemic after my experience with clinic than I would have been without it. This experience has prepared me immensely and I can’t wait to use what I learn to continuing advocating on behalf of children and families.
Some additional resources:
Plus tips on writing for a digital audience: https://bestpracticeslegaled.com/2020/07/15/why-law-profs-should-teach-law-students-to-write-for-the-digital-reader-in-the-age-of-covid-19-with-checklist/