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Student Information

Legal Externships

The externship program provides students the opportunity to obtain practical legal experience while earning course credit.  Our externships provide students a setting where, under close supervision of an attorney or judge and with a faculty mentor/guide, they contribute to the ongoing work of the externship site, giving students the chance to learn the law by being active participants in the legal process.  We also seek to ensure that externs are afforded the opportunity to observe legal proceedings in which the office is engaged to receive the broadest possible exposure to the legal system.  Students will also set learning goals for their externship, produce written work, submit timesheets, and interact with faculty who will guide and assist them with learning from their experience.  Externships are regulated by the American Bar Association's Standards for Legal Education

Some externships will allow (or may require) students to complete the local practice rules (Rule 9 with the Wyoming State Bar), which allows students to appear and represent clients in court, under the supervision of a licensed attorney.

The University of Wyoming College of Law has over 100 externship placement locations, including government agencies at the federal, state, and local level; judicial chambers; non-profit and public interest organizations.  Most sites participate in our program year-round, though some participate only in certain semesters.

The faculty of the University of Wyoming College of Law believes that externship placement can provide students with an opportunity to develop professional skills.  By limiting externship placements to government agencies and nonprofit organizations, the faculty hopes to assure that such placements serve the public interest, and that they not become a substitute for student work that should be remunerated. 

Student Externship Process

  • Standard Practice: Student should complete the online form for the respective semester they are applying, indicating
    • 1) their 3 preferred placements (the school will place the student in order of preference and employer selection after the deadline, placements can be found here); 
    • 2) the student has placed themselves (see next bullet), or
    • 3) the student is submitting a new employer outside of the approved placement list.
  • Independent Placement: A student may contact an employer directly seeking information about the externship or to ask if the employer will accept them earlier than the school's set deadline.  Employers may choose to
    • 1) not select the student, or any extern,
    • 2) accept the extern, or
    • 3) indicate they will consider all applications after the school's deadline.
  • New Placement: If a student secures a position with an organization not on the school's pre-approved externship list, they may have the supervisor complete the 'Field Supervisor Application Form' found through the employer page for consideration of credit.

School Deadlines:

  • Fall externship: First Friday in July
  • Spring externship: First Friday in November
  • Summer externship: First Friday in April

Student Application

There is a simple application process for externships. Prior to the deadline, complete the online form below for the semester you are applying.  Please also supply any supplemental materials noted in the externship description found through the placement lists (http://www.uwyo.edu/law/experiential/legal-externships/placement.html). 

In addition to submitting your resume and application, you will need to register for the course credits through WyoWeb. Please note, that should you elect to take more than 3 credits during the summer term, you must register in each summer session. (i.e.: 4 credits for summer externship, register for 3 credits in Summer Session 1, and 1 credit in Summer Session 2) Please see the College of Law's Registrar, Dave Bluemel (dbluemel@uwyo.edu), with questions related to registration or WyoWeb.

Experiential Learning Caps

Externship credits go towards the 6 credit minimum experiential learning requirement.  Students may not take more than 6 externship credits for the duration of law school.  Please note, some employers will only accept externs for credit, so consider speaking with the faculty director prior to signing up for all 6 credits in a single summer.

Rule 9 - Student Practice License

The Wyoming State Bar provides a way for students to get "real-world" experience prior to graduation.  Rule 9 states that a student may practice in court as a normal attorney under the direct supervision of their supervising attorney.  This gives an extern the incredible opportunity to get exposure to the court system, practice making an argument to the court, and allows the supervisor to give meaningful feedback and mentorship early in a young lawyer's career.  It is encouraged that field supervisors participate and provide these opportunities to their externs, when appropriate.

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