IGS Internships

Judicial (Judge/Law Firm/Advocacy)

The Project

We work with both law students and undergraduates considering a career in a law related field. We have three tracts available.

Job Description

  1. Sitting Judge / Law Clerk
  2. Law Firm
  3. Special Interest Groups

TRACK ONE: Working with a sitting judge allows an intern to see the judicial process from the inside out. The main duties working for a judge and a Law Clerk are research oriented. When a judge issues an opinion, it is the staff that assists in the research and writing of the opinion for the benefit of both the defendant and prosecution and the public at large. You will consult the law library as well as public domain for materials that will support the judge's decisions. In addition, there are numerous other pedestrian tasks that go on with the day to day running of a courthouse. There are motions to consider, pre-trial prep work, post-trial filings, a whole range of activities.

TRACK TWO: Working for a private law firm provides a fresh angle on the law process. This provides a glimpse into how the private sector operates within the law to both serve clients as well as to make a profit. Working for a law firm may allow one a greater opportunity to pursue specific issues is they social, environmental, or corporate that are of individual interest. You will have the opportunity to sit in on client interviews, assist in evidence recovery, and participate in the marketing process to gain new clients.

TRACK THREE: Working for the legal department in a special interest group is a great way to learn the legal process and advocate change that you believe in. We work with organizations that promote women's rights, environmental protection, the public good, animal rights, children's rights among others. Some of these groups have a large legal staff working to promote their agenda including lobbyists in DC. Others are more grass roots and use the legal process as private citizens.

Many judicial law clerks had one or two judicial internships while they were in law school. Judges also frequently hire previous judicial interns as judicial law clerks once these judicial interns finish their law school education. Among the most prestigious judicial internships are those in the federal courts and in a state's highest court. Working as a judicial intern at any level of government is usually a means for a law student to gain practical legal experience and familiarity with the court operations. Judicial law clerk positions are significantly more competitive and prestigious than judicial internship positions. Federal judicial clerkships require an intensive application process that is extremely competitive, as there are only a little over 1,200 federal clerkship positions at any one time for all law school graduates. However, similar to a judicial clerkship, a judicial internship can also open up many career opportunities. A judicial intern's selection process is similar, though less competitive, to judicial clerkship positions. Grades, class ranking, and relevant extracurricular activities such as membership in the law school's law review or being a member of the law school's Moot Court Board are usual and important criteria in selecting a judicial intern.

A judicial extern or extern law clerk are other titles that are commonly used for a judicial intern. The American Bar Association Section of Litigation accepts judicial internship applications annually.