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Judicial Extern Program

The judicial extern program allows law students to perform essentially the same work as that performed by a law clerk to a judge. It usually involves preparing memoranda on cases, reviewing case files, drafting opinions and orders, and attending trials, hearings, and conferences. The precise tasks depend upon the type of court and style of the judge. Judicial externs also have an inside view of the judicial process, learning not only how the courts function, but also what influences a judge to rule in a particular way.

Few law school experiences provide so many benefits related to the professional development of a prospective lawyer. For those students interested in a judicial clerkship, the program gives a taste of the work to help them decide whether to pursue a clerkship, as well as the most relevant training. A judicial externship also is a strong addition to a resume.

In assigning placements, a student’s interests and capabilities are matched with the needs of the judges. Opportunities are available in both state and federal courts. Students must complete a minimum of 100 hours at their placement site at a rate not to exceed ten hours per week. Students must also enroll in the mandatory companion course. Academic credit is awarded for both classroom and placement components.

For more information about the judicial extern program, contact Professor Marianna Bettman (, 513-556-0958)