The USC School of Law appreciates your willingness to serve as a supervising attorney for our administrative law externship program. The purpose of this memo is to give you some insight into the externship program and some guidelines to refer to as a supervising attorney.
An externship is first and foremost an academic undertaking. Students will have the opportunity to obtain practical experience, but the ultimate goal is to provide them with another way to learn, namely in an on-the-job setting.
Throughout the externship, the students should have the opportunity to learn how your agency and office function structurally, as well as how you address ethical, substantive, and procedural issues that you handle in your work. This can be achieved by providing the students opportunities to observe or participate in the various office responsibilities such as legal research and writing, attending hearings, depositions, etc. as well as observing staff meetings.
The students would benefit from the continued development of their research and writing skills by working on legal memoranda and briefs if possible. But we ask that you help to ensure that they also have every opportunity possible to observe how your office functions within the agency as well as in court. In addition to the objectives above, here are some additional suggestions:
We recognize and appreciate that your days are very busy and adding an extern will increase your workload. We request that you perform the primary supervision of the extern, including work assignments, supervision of work and critiques of such work.
Megan Seiner, Director of Student Affairs and Externships will be teaching the course component of the externship. In addition to the time they work with you, the externs must also attend weekly classes at the law school. The purpose of the class component is to discuss and reflect upon what they have done and observed as well as to learn about each other's experiences. They will be instructed on the importance of maintaining confidences in those classroom discussions. Externs will also be providing Megan with written journals memorializing the lessons they feel they are learning throughout the experience. Based upon your evaluations of the students, their journal entries, attendance (both at the externship and the class), and class participation, each student will receive a letter grade at the end of the course. The externship course will run from approximately June 3, 2013-July 22, 2013 and the students are expected to work at least 35 hours per week. The class meetings with Megan Seiner will take place on Tuesday afternoons. We recognize that many, if not all of you will be taking vacations during this time and the externs will keep Megan aware of those dates.
Megan will be in touch with you during the summer to make sure everything is going well. Also, please do not hesitate contact her with any questions, comments, or concerns throughout the externship and afterwards. Megan's email is firstname.lastname@example.org and telephone number is 803-777-1451.
We are so grateful for all of your help!