Our Students are Practice Ready Professionals. You are their Bridge to a Career in the Law.
UBalt Law students are hardworking and eager for real world legal experiences. You can help students achieve their goals by providing learning opportunities and mentorship as an externship supervisor. The employers who work with the UBalt Law Externship Program are overwhelmingly pleased with the dedication, competence and enthusiasm of UBalt Law externs.
If you are interested in hosting an extern, simply review the information below. You may post an opening on UB Law Connect, our online job board. You may contact Prof. Neha Lall or the Law Career Development Office for further assistance.
Field Placement Requirements
Because they are credited experiences, externships must be focused on student learning, not simply the employer's daily needs. By approving the student's request, you are agreeing to make best efforts to meet these supervision expectations:
If you are an employer interested in hosting a UBalt Law extern, please review the field placement requirements and post your opportunity on UB Law Connect. If you have any questions, please contact Prof. Neha Lall, Director of Externships or the Law Career Development Office.
If you extend an externship offer to a UBalt Law student, you will be asked via email to approve the placement on UBalt Law Connect.
Compensation: Externships may be paid or unpaid. Supervisors in paid externships must sign the Paid Externship Supervisor Rider. Paid externships are expected to meet the same educational criteria as unpaid placements.
Orientation: Extern will be on-boarded by their supervisor or participate in a structured orientation. They will be advised on office procedures, confidentiality policies, and be given an overview of their work and expectations. Student will be introduced to other staff, in addition to their direct supervisor, even in the case of remote placements.
Supervision: Extern will be assigned to a supervising attorney, judge, or judicial law clerk who will direct, monitor and mentor the student throughout their time at the placement. Supervisors are expected to have individual meetings weekly with the Extern.
Workflow of Assignments: Externs will be advised on how work is assigned, be given deadlines, and receive guidance throughout the completion of the assignment. The student may be assigned work by multiple attorneys, but the direct supervisor should manage the student's overall workflow to make sure assignments and work load are appropriate for a legal extern.
Appropriate Extern Work: Student assignments should be substantively legal, diverse, and similar to what a lawyer would do. In other words, it should not be work an undergraduate could do. Students should not be assigned administrative tasks like answering phones and managing mail. Substantive non-legal tasks should not equal more than 10% of a student's externship hours. Examples of non-legal tasks include: document/data management, translation, and repetitive tasks (where few skills are learned after the initial assignments have been completed).
Feedback: Externs will be provided with individual, detailed and timely feedback on the work they have completed. Students' direct supervisors shall ensure that other attorneys also provide student with substantive feedback. Supervisors will also review the Extern's Learning Agreement, mid-semester self-assessment, and complete a final evaluation.
Substantive Writing: Extern should produce at least 10 cumulative pages of original work product during the semester. Work product need not be a research paper, legal memo or brief, but should require factual and/or legal analysis. The format of the work product will depend on the work of the placement. Work product requirement may be made up of multiple documents.
Opportunities for Observation: Extern will have opportunities to observe court proceedings, meetings, and other professional activities. This also applies to remote placements. Please remember to include students in any activities that would be beneficial to observe. Please contact the Director of Externships if you need ideas on what is possible at your placement.
Professional Networking: Externs should be given opportunities to participate in social and networking events wherever possible. Supervisors should connect the student to other attorneys in their office or personal networks to help them further their professional development. Supervisor introductions are especially important in virtual placements.
Opportunities for Reflection: Extern will meet with their supervising attorney, judge, or supervising judicial law clerk to discuss their experiences in the placement and other relevant issues. Please remember to have a debrief conversation with your student after observational experiences, even after virtual ones.
Logistics: Extern will have a designated workspace/computer to complete their work or be provided with necessary authorization to work remotely from their personal computer. All students should have the ability to commit some assignments remotely should it become necessary due to Covid-19 infection or exposure/quarantine.
Supervisor Qualifications: Supervisors should be barred attorneys with at least three years of experience. In the case of J.D. advantage positions, such as legal compliance, the supervisor must have completed law school and have at least three years of relevant legal experience. Judicial law clerks with less than three years of experience may supervise a legal extern with oversight by the judge. Students may not be solely supervised by a non-attorney law clerk, paralegal, or administrator.
Modality of Work: Externships may be fully in-person, fully remote, or a hybrid of both in-person and remote. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, all placements should have a plan to allow some remote work if it becomes necessary.
Policy on Discrimination and Sexual Harassment: UBalt Law requires that employers who wish to participate in the Externship Program not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability and that they maintain a policy against sexual harassment. By participating in the Externship Program, employers are deemed to agree with this policy. The Law School maintains full discretion to terminate a relationship with an employer based on feedback from students, alumni, and other community members.
What’s the difference between an internship and externship?
- Externships are academic courses that pair work at a field placement with a classroom component that builds professional competencies.
- Externships fulfill ABA required experiential learning requirements.
- In an Externship, the student will work with you to develop their own learning objectives and you will be responsible for providing regular supervision and feedback to help the student meet those objectives.
- An internship does not involve any academic or law school requirements.
- You do not need to distinguish between an internship or an externship when post the position. You can leave it for the student to decide if they want to pursue academic credit.
Curriculum requirements for Externship placements
- Externships may be paid or unpaid. Paid externships include direct payments by employers, third party stipends and scholarships. Special approval rules apply to paid externships.
- There is a presumption that externships should not be approved at offices where the student is closely related to an employee, partner, or the like.
- Students must produce at least 10 cumulative pages of original work product during the course of the semester.
- Students must log and track their hours, and must complete at least 130 hours in the field placement. The 130 hour minimum is mandated by the law school, but you are free to set and communicate your own hour requirements for your students.
What externship programs does UBalt Law offer?
- We offer our general Attorney Practice Externship year-round, which has students in a mix of placements meet together in a weekly seminar.
- We offer our Judicial Externship year-round, which has students placed in a variety of state, federal, and administrative law judge chambers. The course meets weekly to talk about issues specific to judicial decision making and is generally taught by a judge.
- We offer a Public Interest Lawyering Externship in the Fall semester, which includes students in public interest law placements. The seminar focuses on legal and social issues affecting low income and vulnerable populations, as well as lawyering competencies necessary for public interest law practices.
- We offer a Corporate Counsel Externship program in the Spring semester, where students extern with private and public sector general counsel offices. The seminar explores core lawyering and relationship skills essential for servicing an internal corporate client.
What support can UBalt Law provide me if I want to host a student extern?
- Our Field Placement Supervisor Manual is filled with tips, checklists, and feedback worksheets to help you support your student(s).
- Since remote offices and law practice is new to many of us, we have updated our Manual to include strategies for building meaningful connections with students in an online setting. Our Remote Work Guidelines tip sheet may also be helpful as you craft your program.
- Prof. Neha Lall, the Director of Externships will check in with you throughout the semester and will conduct a site visit, if possible.
- We are always there to support our field placement supervisors navigate any issues that may come up during the experience.
Are Remote and Hybrid Placements Permitted?
- Fully remote, fully in-person, or hybrid externships are permitted.
- Be clear on expectations regarding the modality of work in your posting and the interview process.
- Remote externships should be multidimensional experiences, and should not be limited to research and writing. Please remember to include students in online meetings, hearings, and other observational learning opportunities.
- All field placements should have a plan for remote studen twork should it become necessary due to Covid-19 infection or quarantine.