Rutgers Law School’s Lawyering Program embodies a comprehensive approach to making students "client ready" by the time they graduate from law school, and it is central to our curriculum. It includes legal writing, clinical, externship, moot court, trial advocacy , and skills courses, and complements our diverse array of public interest pro bono opportunities.
Beginning in the 1L year, the program involves a series of experiences that engages students in the intellectual, strategic, ethical, practical, and personal issues that arise in the legal representation of clients. For example, students learn how to interview and counsel clients, research law and facts, write a range of documents that are key to legal practice, and to develop negotiation and advocacy skills. Students learn-and learn to reflect on-different models of effective representation. Towards graduating client-ready students, all of our students must fulfill multiple legal writing and skills requirements in upper-level courses: requirements that exceed the American Bar Association's. Consistent with best practices in legal education, moreover, these courses must meet detailed standards of sequenced, individual feedback.
In particular, our clinical and pro bono programs merge the practical theories and skills of lawyers, and –by our best estimate—deliver 40,000 hours of legal assistance to the Delaware Valley each year.
The Clinics provide a unique opportunity to gain first-hand insight and experience by representing a wide array of disadvantaged individuals, organizations and groups. Depending on the chosen clinic, students may find themselves helping a victim of domestic violence, an abused or neglected child, or a senior citizen who is in a landlord dispute, engaging in community mediation; or even writing a brief on behalf of a human rights organization. Our primary clinics are Civil Practice, Domestic Violence, Children’s Justice, Child and Family Advocacy, Mediation, and Immigration, The law school’s hybrid clinics include International Human Rights Advocacy and Litigation, Community Based Practice and Small Business counseling.
|Faculty-Supervised Clinical Programs|
|# spaces available||714|
|# spaces filled||151||11|
|# involved in field placements||184||6|
Pro Bono/Public Interest
Our 14 pro bono and public interest programs are designed to enhance substantive knowledge, skills and professional networks while serving unmet legal needs in the community. Rutgers law students share in the satisfaction of helping clients who have nowhere else to turn as they work with lawyers, the courts, and the public in these personally rewarding programs. Hallmarks of all projects include comprehensive training and ongoing supervision. Some examples of pro bono projects include Bankruptcy, Children’s Social Security Initiative, Federal Prisoner Re-entry, Financial Literacy, and much more.