admissions

FAQ for Clinical & Experiential Learning Programs

General Questions about Clinics and Experiential Learning:

  • Why should I take a clinic in law school?
    Clinical experience gives you a chance to learn about and develop your skills in particular areas of legal practice. In clinics you are using your legal education to help real people with real problems. Clinics provide “hands on” experience under the direct supervision of experienced attorneys. Exposure to different ways to use your law degree can help you explore and decide the type of practice that interests you most. Clinics are a great complement to the work you do in a traditional law school class. 
  • What types of clinical experiences does the law school offer?
    UGA Law School offers a wide range of clinical experience to second and third year law students. These include clinics that provide litigation experience, transactional experience, neutral practice, appeals practice, and public interest work under the supervision of experienced faculty.  Three programs  focus on criminal law practice (Prosecutorial Clinic, Capital Assistance Project, and Criminal Defense Clinic.)  The other programs focus on civil practice opportunities. Clinical education at UGA Law continues to evolve, with new clinics focused on appellate practice and the corporate counsel experience established in 2010. Each clinical program is described in more detail below.
  • Can I take more than one clinic?
    A student can take as many as 16 hours of clinical credit towards your J.D. degree. However, we strongly recommend that you not try to take multiple clinics at once, and some clinical work presents conflicts that prevent you from taking them at the same time (for example, Prosecutorial Clinic and Criminal Defense Clinic.). Some programs that require a lesser time commitment or a greater classroom component do not count against the clinical cap. These programs  include the Capital Assistance Project and the Public Interest Practicum.
  • Can I take a clinic for more than one semester?
    Except for the Prosecutorial Clinic, all clinics require only a single semester. But many clinics offer additional semesters, meaning you can work in the clinic more than once. Requirements and hours earned may be different for the advanced clinics. The Prosecutorial Clinic requires a three semester commitment. Students interested must apply in the fall of their second year to begin the Prosecutorial Clinic the following spring semester and continue with this clinic through their third year of law school.  
  • How do I enroll in a clinic?
    The enrollment procedure varies based on the clinic you have selected. Some clinics use an application and interview process while others use the point allocation system used for other classes. All clinics that require applications and interviews make their decisions before you must allocate points on other classes, so you will know your choices before you allocate points. 
  • When does enrollment start each semester?
    For clinics in fall and spring semester, enrollment starts about half-way through the preceding semester, beginning with early enrollment for some Atlanta-based externships. As noted above, about half the clinics require applications and interviews, with decisions occurring before point allocation. The rest of the clinics ask that you use the regular point allocation process.  For summer clinics, enrollment starts in mid-February for students who have arranged their own placements.  About half the clinics will require applications and interviews. You can enroll in the rest of the clinics during regular enrollment for the summer program.
  • Must I use points when enrolling in clinics?
    Generally, yes.  Several clinics only permit enrollment through the law school’s traditional point allocation process. For clinics that require applications and interviews before point allocation, you will usually have to allocate points which (if you accept an offer from that clinic) will be deducted from the points you have available for other classes.  A handful of programs operate by permission of instructor only, and do not require points. Consult the listings below, or talk with the clinic professor for more information about how points work for a particular clinic.
  • Do I receive credit for work in a clinic? Do I get a grade?
    Yes to both questions. All of clinical programs award credit that counts towards law school graduation. Some programs offer a fixed amount of credit, while many offer variable credit that depends on the number of hours of work that you devote to clinic work.  Half of the credit that you earn in a clinic is graded, and counts towards your GPA. To account for this, the Law School requires you to enroll on Oasis for two different course listing for each clinic: the regular listing and a “lab” listing. The former is the graded section; the latter is ungraded.  Courses that do not count towards the clinical cap are fully graded, including the Capital Assistance Project and the Public Interest Practicum.

CIVIL PROGRAMS:

 

Appellate Litigation Clinic

  • What is the Appellate Litigation Clinic?
    This clinic essentially runs as a small law office that is appointed to represent indigent parties with appeals before the United States Courts of Appeals and before federal administrative agencies such as the Board of Immigration Appeals. Once the clinic is appointed to represent the client, students work in teams drafting briefs and, if oral argument is granted, preparing for oral argument. The brief-writing experience is very intensive, and students should expect to devote considerable time to drafting and redrafting the brief before final submission.
  • What is required?
    Only third year students are eligible for the clinic, and it is a full year (two semester) clinic.
  • Are there any prerequisites?
    There are no prerequisites.
  • How do I enroll?
    Enrollment is by application only. During the spring semester, applications will be available. In addition to the application, interested students will need to submit a resume, transcript, and writing sample. You do NOT need to allocate points for the clinic. Students will be told whether they are admitted prior to the conclusion of the point allocation process.
  • Contact:
    Prof. Erica Hashimoto hashimo@uga.edu.

Civil Externship Program

  • How do I enroll in the Civil Externship?
    For the Fall and Spring semester, the Externship Program holds two rounds of enrollment, Early and Regular. Early Enrollment involves placements which traditionally take students not only from UGA but also other law schools, and which do so on an competitive basis. These include many of the Atlanta placements. Regular Enrollment involves placements which reserve placements for UGA students, regardless of other applications from students at other schools.  Early enrollment typically starts about half-way through the semester before the one in which you would enroll; regular enrollment happens in the weeks before point allocation.
     
    For the Summer semester, the Externship Program offers a limited pool of pre-arranged placements, and also offers the opportunity for students to initiate the own placements. For student-initiated placements, enrollment opens in mid to late February, and applications are evaluated on a first-in-time basis. For pre-arranged placements, the application deadline typically falls in late March or early April, with decision to follow in mid-April.
  • What types of placements are offered through the Civil Externship?
    Judicial:
    Judicial placements exist with United States District Court Judges, and with judges of many different jurisdictions in the State Courts, including Superior, State, Magistrate and Probate Courts.
    Locations for judicial clerkships range from Athens and its surrounding counties to Atlanta and Augusta. We have also placed students with judges in their home counties on an ad hoc basis.
     
    Governmental:
    Governmental placements include major federal agencies such as the S.E.C., the E.P.A. and the E.E.O.C., as well as various state and local government offices. (Note that many of these require early
    enrollment.) We also have placements which provide legislative and policy support to governmental entities.
     
    Private Non-Profits:
    We place students in a broad range of private non-profit placements, which provide services ranging from representation of individuals to major policy litigation to transactional work of a variety of sorts. Subject matter includes poverty law, health law, entertainment law, criminal defense, child protective services and immigration law, among many others.
     
    New Placements:
    You can also propose additional placements.  All proposed placements must meet a few core requirements: 
     
    -  You must work in a governmental, judicial or private non-profit placement.
    -  You must be performing law related work.
    -  You may not receive any pay for your work.
    -  You must be working for a licensed attorneys.
    -  Your proposed supervisor must assure us that they will provide a good learning experience.
     
    Professor Scherr will talk with your proposed supervisor to review the program, and to make sure your supervisor understands what we expect of them. Within these broad requirements, we have approved a wide range of placements. Check with Professor Scherr if you have a new idea.
  • How do I apply for an Externship placement?
    Site supervisors prefer to interview students each term as a way of choosing interns. You will also want to plan your time carefully, since the Clinic asks large blocks of time during the week. Thus, we hold our selections before sign-up for other classes. You will need to file an application with the Clinic, and will most likely interview with your desired placements. Final selection of students will occur before the allocation of points. The Clinic uses the point process; consult with the Clinic Director about the points used for particular placements in the past. If selected, you lose the points you allocated for that placement; if not, you preserve all of your points for other classes.
     
    Students who have ideas for new placements should consult Professor Scherr as soon as possible, so that we can arrange to speak with your prospective supervisor early.
  • What else do I need to know about the externship program?
    For fall and spring semester, new externs receive 4 to 6 hours of credit for work between 10 and 20 hours per week; returning externs receive 3 to 5 hours. The basic seminar meets weekly for two hours; the advanced meets every other week. Other course requirements include periodic journals, a research paper arising out of your work site, and meetings with the clinic director. 
     
    For summer semester, students receive between 2 to 4 hours of credit for between 140 and 280 hours of work over a minimum of 6 weeks. Students will have regular readings, must participate in online activities, including a listserv, and will produce writing similar to that required in the academic year externship. 
  • Contact:
    Alex Scherr
    Director of Civil Clinics
    542-6510

Corporate Counsel

  • What is the Corporate Counsel Externship?
    The Corporate Counsel Externship gives students a chance to explore the practice of law from the perspective of an in-house counsel. It benefits not only students interested in an in-house career but also those who will work in law firms and deal with in-house counsel as their primary client contact. Students will be placed in an in-house legal department and will work under the guidance of a supervising attorney. During the fall and spring semesters, students will attend a weekly seminar, which supplements the work experience with readings, discussion, and practical skill assignments.  The externship runs slightly differently in the summer because summer placements may be out of state. The corporate counsel externship program offers a list of placements, but students may also initiate their own placements, with approval and input from the coordinator of the corporate counsel externship program, Carol Morgan. Organizations participating in the externship include publicly-traded companies, private companies, governmental entities, and non-profit organizations.
  • Are there any prerequisites?
    Corporations (JURI 4210) is a prerequisite, and Legal Profession (JURI 4300) is a co-requisite.
  • How do I enroll?
    Prior to enrollment for other classes, students apply for the corporate counsel externship and indicate the number of points they will allocate for the externship. After a screening process, students are interviewed, and selected students are recommended to a placement site.
  • What else do I need to know about the externship program?
    Externs receive 4 hours of credit during fall and spring semesters and have the option to earn either 2, 3, or 4 hours of credit during the summer semester based on number of hours worked. Course requirements include periodic journal reflections and a final appraisal of the externship experience.
  • Contact:
    Carol Morgan
    404-202-7361

Environmental Practicum

  • What is the Environmental Practicum?
    In the fall, the environmental practicum is limited to law students.  In the spring, the practicum is a multi-disciplinary clinic that matches graduate students from a variety of disciplines with community stakeholders facing specific environmental challenges. Both semesters, the practicum is a service learning course that provides a structured and supportive format for students to apply policy, design and ecological principles learned in the classroom to the real world of people and policy. 
  • What disciplines are involved in the spring practicum?
    Students from law, ecology, environmental design, wildlife ecology, scientific illustration and agricultural engineering may participate in the course. Water quality and the protection and restoration of aquatic species through the best available science, design and policy concepts are key goals for this hands-on program. The course presents a holistic approach to land use planning and environmental protection from the perspectives of our interdisciplinary faculty and guest lecturers.
  • What type of work is involved?
    Can range from ordinance and statute-drafting, to reports analyzing various legal, policy and scientific issues, to developing educational brochures, more extensive guidebooks, and short films.
     
    Environmental Practicum students work together on issues in a selected watershed.  Previous Environmental Practicum courses have included the Etowah, Altamaha, and Satilla Initiatives. Students in earlier Environmental Practicum classes drafted a conservation subdivision ordinance adopted by the Cherokee County Board of Commissioners, promoted the use of transferable development rights to protect water quality resulting in enabling legislation adopted by the Georgia General Assembly, and developed a system of water withdrawal to protect endangered aquatic species which as adopted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
  • What type of work is required for this course?
    Students are required to attend two or three class meetings in the first two weeks of semester to select projects and develop work-plans; There are also approximately four to six lectures (Tuesdays from 3:30-6:00 PM) on ecological, design and policy issues affecting the watershed. The class will take one paddling trip; students are required to participate in periodic meetings with the group to develop particular projects.   Most semesters participants will make a project presentation (either to stakeholders or to the class and other interested parties at the University), with rehearsal in advance.
  • Are there any prerequisites?
    While there are no prerequisites, we strongly encourage Law students to take this course
    AFTER they have taken the environmental law survey course.
  • Contact:
    Laurie Fowler, rm 106a Odum School of Ecology (coordinator)
    (706) 202-9949; lfowler@uga.edu

    You should also review the Practicum’s website found at www.rivercenter.uga.edu/education/practicum.htm.

Family Violence Clinic

  • What is the Family Violence Clinic?
    The Family Violence Clinic is a litigation oriented clinic that offers legal support to victims of domestic violence as lay advocates or third year practitioners. You gain exposure to a high volume, short deadline legal practice, and learn the law and methods of this practice in depth.
  • What type of work would I do there?
    We ask you for a full range of legal work: phone intake and referral; in-person interview and support; investigation, case planning and hearing preparation; and negotiation. If you are a third year student, you will also be eligible to represent clients under Georgia’s third year practice rules.
  • What else is involved besides the on-site work with clients?
    Seminar and staff meetings supplement your work. We focus on laws relating to family violence, and on the skills required for effective practice. Discussions include individual clients and callers, reviews of case files and case loads, and in-service analyses of relevant legal, community or practical concerns. Finally, journals and supervision by clinic faculty provide you a framework within which to reflect on and advance your own personal commitment to being a lawyer, whether you choose to continue work in family violence or in other areas of the law. This work can be difficult, but can also be deeply rewarding. The clinic encourages you to track your reactions throughout the semester.
  • What else do I need to know about the Family Violence Clinic?
    You can receive four, five or six hours of credit for 10, 15 or 20 hours of work per week respectively (or three, four or five hours of credit for 20, 30 or 40 hours of work per week in the Summer). The clinic holds a weekly two hour class meeting. The Clinic requires an initial 3 hour startup orientation session. Other course requirements include periodic journals, an in-depth analytical case study relating to clinic work and meetings with the clinic director. As with other clinics, half your credit is graded, half pass fail.
  • How do I enroll?
    Prior to enrollment for other classes, students apply for the Family Violence Clinic and indicate the number of points they will allocate.  After a screening process, students are interviewed, and selected students will be notified of their acceptance or placed on a waiting list.  If selected, and you accept your placement, you lose the points you allocated for that placement; if not, you preserve all of your points for other classes.  Applications will be available in the Civil Clinic office.  Up to 8 students may enroll per semester.  The Family Violence Clinic is available Spring, Summer and Fall to eligible students.
  • Contact:
    Susan Schaffer
    Managing Attorney
    Family Violence Clinic
    (706) 369-6272
     
    Alex Scherr
    Director of Civil Clinics
    Room 338
    542-6510

Mediation Practicum

  • What is the Mediation Practicum?
    The mediation practicum consists of two courses, Mediation I and Mediation II. Mediation I is a general civil mediation training that is approved by the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution. Students who complete all of the requirements are eligible to register with the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution and, once registered, mediate court-referred cases in Georgia. Successful completion of Mediation I (or prior registration and the permission of the instructor) is required for students desiring to take Mediation II. Mediation II is a clinical experience where students mediate on-site for the Athens Clarke-County Magistrate Court.
  • Contact:
    Ellie Lanier
    (706) 207-5148
    eclanier@uga.edu

    Alex Scherr
    (706) 542-6510
    scherr@uga.edu

Mediation I

  • What is required for Mediation I?
    Mediation 1 is a three hour, three credit course that meets weekly. It is a highly participatory course, and therefore class attendance and participation are extremely important. Missed classes must be approved by the instructor, and may result in failure to meet requirements for ODR registration. The course may be taken for a grade without registration with the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution, in which case class attendance for each class is not mandatory.
  • Is there a writing requirement for Mediation I?
    There is very little out of class work involved in Mediation I, hence class participation is critical to your grade and to becoming a competent and ethical mediator. Some reading and out of class preparation is required, but the bulk of your work and learning will be done in class.
  • Is there an exam for this course?
    There is a final exam that is performance based and involves participating in mediation simulations similar to the role plays performed in class. Typically the exam is administered during the last class rather than during exam period.
  • How do I enroll in Mediation I?
    Registration eligibility for Mediation I is based on the points allocation process. Enrollment is limited to 15 students per section. Mediation I is offered during Fall and Spring and Summer semesters.
  • What else do I need to know?
    Mediation I hours do not count towards your clinical credit cap.

Mediation II

  • What is Mediation II?
    Mediation II is a mediation clinic operating in conjunction with the 10th District Alternative Dispute Resolution Program and the Athens-Clarke County Magistrate Court.
  • Are there prerequisites?
    Mediation II students must successfully complete of Mediation I and register with the GA Office of Dispute Resolution. There are fees associated with registration with the state, and these costs must be paid by the student to the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution.
  • What are the course requirements?
    Students in Mediation II are required to attend a two hour seminar weekly and be available to mediate on-site for a minimum of 4 hours each week, preferably scheduled in 2 two hour blocks that correlate with the Court’s calendar. Other course requirements include periodic journals, on-line forum discussions, participation in class “case rounds” and an in-depth 15 page case assessment. Mediation II offers 3 credit hours that do count as clinical credit.
  • How do I apply for Mediation II?
    As noted, Mediation II is only available to students who have successfully completed Mediation I and/or have registered with the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution to mediate and received approval from the instructor. Up to 8 students may enroll per semester. Mediation II is available Spring, Summer and Fall to eligible students.

Medical-Legal Partnership Clinic

  • What is the Medical-Legal Partnership Clinic?
    Medical-Legal Partnerships (MLPs) are an innovative approach to addressing the social determinants of health for indigent individuals. Law students in UGA’s MLP Clinic will partner with health care professionals to tackle a variety of legal needs that impact patients, including immigration, disability rights, benefits, and family law. Working under the supervision of Professor Jason Cade, students will have direct responsibility for all aspects of client representation in cases undertaken by the clinic, including the opportunity to interview and advise potential clients, to conduct research and draft legal documents, to advocate in court proceedings and administrative hearings, and to foster inter-professional approaches to holistic problem solving. From time to time, students may also have the opportunity to develop training materials for medical providers, legal advocates, or patients, and engage in related policy work.

    The weekly seminar component of the MLP Clinic provides skills training and substantive instruction in the clinic’s primary practice areas. The seminar also includes clinical “case rounds” designed to reinforce collaborative problem solving and explore real-world professional responsibility issues.

  • Time Commitment / Credits
    This is a year-long (two semester) clinic and is awarded 4 credits each semester. The MLP Clinic requires a half-day orientation session at the beginning of the Fall semester. Students will be expected to spend 12 hours per week on clinic-related work, and sometimes more during peak periods in active cases. In addition to attending the weekly two-hour seminar, students will be required to schedule five hours per week for regular office hours and client-intake. Other work on behalf of the clinic’s clients can often be done on weekends or evenings, if preferred. Some of the clinic’s cases may require travel to Atlanta for court proceedings.
  • Are there any prerequisites?
    There are no prerequisites. However, students with prior experience or course work in health care, immigration law, family law, employment law, housing law, trial advocacy, evidence, disability law, benefits law, or other poverty law courses are encouraged to apply, as are students with foreign language skills. Enrollment preference may be given to 3Ls, but 2Ls are also permitted to apply.
  • Is there a final exam?
    No.
  • How do I enroll in the MLP Clinic?
    Enrollment in the MLP Clinic is by permission of the instructor only and is limited to 8 students per year. Enrollment decisions will be determined primarily on the basis of the MLP Clinic Application form. In addition to the application, interested students will need to submit a resume and unofficial transcript, but may delete or redact any indication of grades or class-rank from these documents.
  • Where can I get more information?
    For more information, please contact:
    Prof. Jason Cade
    cadej@uga.edu
  • Contact:
    Prof. Jason Cade
    cadej@uga.edu

Public Interest Practicum

  • What is the Public Interest Practicum?
    The Public Interest Practicum (PIP) is a three-credit seminar on public interest law and policy that also provides students with the opportunity to provide legal advice to poor clients in Athens. Students work on a variety of service projects, and visit with clients at diverse locations, including soup kitchens, shelters, jails, schools, senior centers and the like. As law practice experience, PIP offers experience in interviewing clients, investigating their situations, performing pragmatic legal researching, assessing solutions to hard problems related to the lack of money, and delivering solid, useful advice. Students do this in the context of a seminar that explore major issues of public interest law and lawyering, providing a rich combination of practical, theoretical and cross-disciplinary perspectives on the public dimensions of the lawyer’s role.
  • What is required?
    Students may take PIP for up to two semesters at any point in the second or third years. PIP requires a weekly seminar, with readings; 5 -10 hours per week of work with clients or projects; regular reflective writing; and representation of individual clients under the supervision of the PIP instructor. PIP does not count towards the 16 credit cap on clinical credits, and is a fully graded course.
  • Are there any prerequisites?
    No.
  • How do I enroll?
    Through regular point allocation.
  • Contact:
    Alex Scherr
    Director Civil Clinic
    706-542-6510

 


CRIMINAL PROGRAMS

 

Criminal Defense Clinic

  • What are the Criminal Defense Clinics?
    The Criminal Defense Clinics place law students inside the Public Defender Office for the Western Judicial Circuit. During summer semester students may extern at certain other PD offices, including offices in Atlanta, Gainesville, and others in relatively close proximity to Athens. The Western Judicial Circuit Public Defender Office office is located at 160 E. Washington Street in downtown Athens, a five minute walk from the Law School. The full-time staff of the office includes 15 attorneys, four investigators, and five other support staff. The Western Judicial Circuit includes Athens-Clarke and Oconee Counties and the Western Circuit Public Defender Office handles all manner of criminal cases in juvenile, municipal, state and superior courts, plus appeals.

    The Criminal Defense Clinic I (JUR 5170) serves as an introduction to working in the public defender office and the local courts. The course is designed for 2d year students, but 3d year students may enroll. Students in 5170 are required to observe all of the standard court appearances that occur in the criminal process – bond hearings, committal hearings, motion hearings, arraignments, trials, guilty pleas and sentencings – as well as to work for their supervising attorney assisting with case investigation, witness interviewing, legal research, court presentations and all other work that is integral to a criminal defense practice.

    Criminal Defense Clinic II (JUR 4500) is for 3rd year students who have previously taken Criminal Defense Clinic I. CDC II students also work for supervising attorneys in the public defender office and also represent clients before all courts and engage in the full range of courtroom advocacy, provided they are under the supervision of one of the licensed attorneys in the PD office.
  • Is there a classroom component?
    Yes. Both Clinics have a seminar meeting once a week. The Criminal Defense Clinic I seminar addresses various issues related to criminal defense, including search and seizure, defenses to crime, the practical workings of the courts, the ethics of criminal defense, DUI law, and racism in the criminal justice system. The Criminal Defense Clinic II seminar focuses more on trial practice skills, though it will also address various issues that are topical and current in the criminal justice arena. Both seminars rely heavily on actual cases handled in the office as the basis for discussion.
  • Is there a final exam?
    Grades are based on a combination of recommendations from the supervising attorneys, a written (3 page) journal submitted twice during the semester, the completion of at least one written research assignment done for the supervising attorney, the completion of the requisite number of hours of work each week, and participation in the weekly seminar.
  • Are there any prerequisites?
    No. The Clinics are open to all second and third year law students. However, Criminal Defense Clinic I is a pre-requisite to Criminal Defense Clinic II, and only third year students may take Criminal Defense Clinic II. Courses in Criminal Procedure and Evidence are very helpful. Also, on the first Saturday of the semester and other times by arrangement, new students enrolled in Criminal Defense Clinic I participate in an orientation session. Please make sure you are available on the first Saturday of the semester if you enroll in CDC I.
  • How do I enroll in the Criminal Defense Clinics?
    Registration is on the point system as are most law school courses. There is no application process for the Criminal Defense Clinics. Both Defense Clinics are offered fall, spring and summer semesters and students may enroll in either course for more than one semester.
  • How much credit can I get for Defense Clinic?
    Criminal Defense Clinic I is a three credit course. Criminal Defense Clinic II can be taken for from 4 to 6 hours of credit. Both Clinics can be taken for more than one semester, which is highly recommended for persons who intend to obtain work in a public defender office after graduation.
  • How many hours of work is required?
    In Criminal Defense Clinic I, students are required to work in the Clinic 11 hours each week. Summer students must work 20 hours/week. Clinic II students are required to work in the public defender office 20 hours a week if they are enrolled for 6 hours of credit, 17.5 hours if enrolled for 5 hours credit, and 15 hours if enrolled for 4 hours credit. Summer students enrolled in Criminal Defense Clinic II must work 35, 31 or 28 hours/week depending on whether they are registered for 6, 5 or 4 hours of credit.
  • Where and when would I do the work?
    Work on behalf of clients of the Public Defender Office can often be done in the evening or on the weekends. Some of the work must be done during the regular hours of court on Monday through Friday. Depending on the assignment, the work will be done in court, at home, in the PD office, or elsewhere in the community (for instance, in going to speak with witnesses, visiting and photographing the scene of an incident, etc.).
  • Contact:
    Russell Gabriel
    Director Criminal Defense Clinics
    gabrielr@uga.edu (706)542-7818

Prosecutorial Clinic

  • What is the Prosecutorial Clinic?
    The Prosecutorial Clinic Program integrates classroom instruction with an externship in a real prosecutor office located somewhere in Northeast Georgia. Students receive three consecutive semesters of classroom instruction from an experienced former state prosecutor beginning in the spring semester of their second year. During their third year, students work in their assigned externship office from between 9 to 18 hours per week (and earning from between 3 to 6 credit hours). During this externship, students have the opportunity to observe all phases of a criminal prosecution. They research various questions of law and draft legal memoranda and charging documents. And, under Georgia's Third Year Practice Act, students are authorized to directly participate in conducting preliminary hearings, motion hearings, arraignments, juvenile adjudications, probation revocations, grand jury proceedings and even jury trials.
  • What is required?
    Prosecutorial Clinic is only open for enrollment during the fall registration period of a student’s second year, i.e., registration for the spring semester of a student’s second year. (Once a student is accepted into the Program, however, he or she is automatically permitted to register for the succeeding two semesters, i.e., the fall and spring semesters of their third year.)
  • Are there any prerequisites?
    There are no formal academic prerequisites. Once enrolled, however, students are required to sign a Letter of Commitment promising to register for and complete the three-semester program. By signing such letter, each student also pledges to represent the State of Georgia, their Law School, and himself or herself in accordance with the highest professional and ethical standards of the legal community. And prior to being sworn in under the Third Year Practice Act, he or she must submit to and pass a criminal background check.
  • How do I enroll?
    Enrollment is pursuant to the Law School’s point system. Only 25 students are permitted to enroll in this three-semester course, so acceptance into the Program is highly competitive.
  • Contact:
    Alan A. Cook
    Director Prosecutorial Clinic Program
    UGA School of Law
    (706) 542-5212 acook@uga.edu

Capital Assistance Project

  • What is the Capital Assistance Project Clinic?
    The Capital Assistance Project was initiated in 1998 at the suggestion of the Supreme Court of Georgia. In this clinic students work at agencies tasked with defending individuals charged with or convicted of capital crimes. Students undertake valuable research and writing projects to assist agency attorneys with these cases.
  • What is required?
    This two credit course requires 70 to 80 hours of work for the agency per semester, In addition, students participate in a one hour per week class in Athens. The class is held at a time arranged at the beginning of each semester. Students enrolled in the Project should anticipate preparing a significant amount of written work such as memoranda in support of motions and appellate briefs. The agencies are all located in Atlanta so students should anticipate traveling to Atlanta on a regular basis although some of the assigned work may be completed in Athens.
  • Are there any prerequisites?
    The following courses are useful but not required: Evidence, Criminal Procedure (I or II), and/or Capital Punishment.
  • How do I enroll?
    This course is not subject to the point allocation system. Also, the course does not count against the law school’s limit on clinical credits. Registration requires permission of the Director. Interested students must complete an application and submit it with a current copy of their resume to the Director. The student must meet with the Director. Some of the agencies may also interview the student.
  • Contact:
    Curtis Nesset
    Project Director
    Rusk Hall, Room 306
    706-542-5277 nesset@uga.edu