Through the UNM School of Law's robust externship program, students have the opportunity to gain valuable practical skills in a real-world setting while working with a supervising attorney. Externs will confront actual legal problems and analyze and explore the various roles that lawyers or legal institutions play in their communities. Externships are intended to supplement and complement the knowledge and experience students receive in the Law Practice Clinic and in their other law school courses.
The Agency Externship Program allows students to work with a government, non-profit, judicial placement or advocacy organization under the supervision of a practicing lawyer to obtain knowledge and experience in the practice of law. Agency externs have the opportunity to interview and counsel clients, negotiate with lawyers and others, make presentations in court, draft legal documents, interview witnesses, and generally to perform and learn the various tasks and skills necessary to help a particular client resolve his or her legal problems.
The Judicial Extern Program provides law students with a candid first-hand experience in the judicial decision-making process. Students work in a judge or justice's chambers for a specified number of hours each week to work directly with the judge in daily decision-making tasks. All facets of the judicial decision-making process can be open to discussion, including a candid critique of the quality of the presentations made by lawyers appearing before the judge. Judicial externs also summarize case files, conduct legal research, and draft documents.
The Alternative Dispute Resolution [ADR] Extern Program provides law students exposure to dispute resolvers or assistants in dispute resolution organizations dealing with mediation, arbitration, facilitation, and summary jury trials. Under the supervision of licensed attorneys, ADR externs confront actual legal problems and analyze and explore the various roles that lawyers, judges or legal institutions play in the ever-expanding role of alternative dispute resolution. ADR externs can interview and work with clients, negotiate with lawyers and others, and generally perform and learn the various tasks and skills necessary to help clients resolve legal problems.
The Semester in Washington D.C. Program allows students to spend the fall semester working in Washington D.C. with a government, non-profit, judicial placement or advocacy organization. Students are able to earn 12 credits through this program. Participating students also may enroll in a seminar class to earn an additional 3 credits.