Clinical Education at Howard Law
Howard Universityís Clinical Law Center provides outstanding education and training that teaches students the skills and substantive law necessary for the effective practice of law. Students learn through experience, reflection and classroom interaction. Committed to social justice, Howardís Clinical Law Center provides leadership and service to the local, national and global community.
The Law Schoolís clinical courses are offered through the Clinical Law Center (CLC). The primary goal of the CLC is to provide a high quality course of training that teaches students the skills necessary for the effective practice of law. The model is one of learning through experience, with an ancillary benefit of providing assistance to the poor and the under-represented of the greater metropolitan District of Columbia area.
The Clinical Law Center offers seven in-house, actual-client clinical experiences: Criminal Justice Clinic, Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Clinic, Civil Rights Clinic, Fair Housing Clinic, Investor Justice and Education Clinic, Intellectual Property and Trademark Clinic and the new Child Welfare/Family Law Clinic. All of these clinical offerings are taught by regular tenured faculty, tenure-track faculty or Supervising Attorneys here at the Law School, and students attend the classroom component of the course at the Law School.
The Law Schoolís Externship Program is also offered through the CLC and includes four separate externship courses: General; Environmental Justice; Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Faculty and Staff
Criminal Justice Clinic
Tamar M. Meekins
Clinical Law Center Director
Associate Professor and Supervising Attorney
Professor and Supervising Attorney
Civil Rights Clinic
Aderson B. Francois
Professor and Supervising Attorney
Homer C. La Rue
Professor and Supervising Attorney
Fair Housing Clinic
Valerie J. Schneider
Assistant Professor and Supervising Attorney
Investor Justice and Education Clinic
Adjunct Professor and Supervising Attorney
Intellectual Property and Trademark Clinic
Adjunct Professor and Supervising Attorney
Child Welfare Clinic
Adjunct Professor and Supervising Attorney
Adjunct Professor and Public Interest Manager
Alice Gresham Bullock
Professor and IRS Externship Coordinator
Professor, IRS Externship
Associate Professor and SEC Externship Coordinator
Adjunct Professor, SEC Externship
The Clinical Law Center is located on the first and ground floors of Notre Dame Hall. The main reception area is on the Ground Floor in Room G-18 which is open to clients and prospective clients during regular business hours. The student work area is located in a suite of rooms on the ground floor of Notre Dame Hall. The student work area is equipped with client interview rooms, a library and computer work stations that are available to clinical students during all hours in which students have access to the Law School facility. To maintain the confidentiality of client information and lawyer work-product, the student work area is kept locked. Access to the area is limited to those persons authorized to be in the area. Student Attorneys are crucial to the maintenance of the security of the area and are advised that they may not invite persons into the area who are not enrolled in one of the clinical courses at the law school or who are not there on client-related business. Additional client meeting space, a small conference room and the Clinicís Resource Centers are located on the first floor of Notre Dame.
To be eligible for enrollment in any CLC clinical course, interested students must complete an Application for Enrollment, interview and be accepted by the Supervising Attorney of the Program for which the student has applied. Any student who applies to multiple programs must be interviewed by the Supervising Attorney for each program.
Students must turn in their application prior to the interview with one of the Supervising Attorneys. The Application requires that a resume be attached and that the student complete a brief personal statement of interest. Applications for the Fall 2015 semester are due in to the CLC Office (Notre Dame G-18) by close of business on March 23rd. Additionally, students may sign up for interviews at any time as specified by the particular programís supervising attorney in the CLC Office. Interviews will be scheduled with the individual Supervising Attorneys.
Students who are accepted into any of the clinical programs will be notified by e-mail posting prior to the start of the registration period for the Spring semester. Additionally, copies of the acceptance list will be posted in the CLC and around the Law School. A short waitlist may also be posted for each program; students who are waitlisted will be notified should a slot in the desired clinical program become available. Students may not register for a clinical course unless and until they are officially accepted into the program.
The Clinic Director will notify officials in the Law Schoolís Recordís Office as to which students will be permitted to register.
Participation in each clinical program requires that students attend and participate in an orientation program prior to the start of the semester or during the first week of classes. The orientation program for each Clinic will be scheduled by the respective Supervising Attorney, and, in most instances, will take place in August, for the fall semester, and January, for the spring semester, just prior to, or during, the 1st week of classes of the fall or spring semesters. Students should take into account the schedule of the orientation and schedule their activities accordingly.
Any student who is unable to attend, or fails to attend the orientation program may be dropped from the clinical course, and a student from the wait list will be allowed to register in his or her place. Please remember that the orientation program is mandatory.
Recently, the ADR Clinic has entered into an agreement with several federal agencies to allow students to participate in valuable mediation and arbitration activities carried on by these agencies. Because of the requirement of this agreement, students who are accepted and enroll in the ADR Clinic will be required to obtain a security clearance for participation in such activities with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Students who are unable or unwilling to secure the required security clearances may be dropped from the ADR Clinic at the discretion of the Supervising Attorney.
Students accepted into and who enroll in the Fair Housing, Civil Rights and Intellectual Property clinical programs may also be required to obtain student bar licenses issued by the District of Columbia Court of Appeals or other certifications. Applications for these licenses must be completed by the accepted student and turned into the CLC office. CLC will then obtain the Deanís certification and submit the applications to the District of Columbia Court of Appeals and the 4th & DC Circuit Courts where appropriate. Additionally, the IRS and SEC Externships require that students apply to these specific government agencies directly. You should speak with the Professor supervising these programs if you wish to apply.
Criminal Justice Clinic
The Criminal Justice Clinic (CJC) is a one-year clinical course for which a student receives twelve (12) credits. Because the course is year-long, a student receives no credit if he/she does not complete the second semester of the course.
The CJC course includes actual client representation and a classroom seminar. The classroom portion of the clinic includes two (2) seminar sessions per week, each of which is an hour and fifty minutes in duration.
The classroom component includes review of constitutional law, criminal procedure and evidence, as well as case rounds, analysis of ethical, strategic and client representation issues, and litigation skill development. The legal work includes the representation of indigent adult persons charged with criminal misdemeanors in the District of Columbia Superior Court. Students are responsible for all aspects of the representation of the client, under the direct supervision of the CJC faculty, including preparation for presentation of the case at all stages of the proceeding. Such preparation includes, but is not limited to, client and witness interviews, interaction with the Office of the United States Attorney and the Metropolitan Police Department, legal research and the drafting and filing of litigation pleadings. Students also appear in court at pretrial hearings, trials, sentencing proceedings and parole revocation hearings. The CJC continues to expand to other areas of criminal practice and may in various years include administrative hearings, juvenile justice matters or the representation of defendants in protective order violations in domestic relations cases.
Eligibility and Prerequisites:
- Successful completion of four (4) semesters of law school study;
- Successful completion of a course in Evidence, Civil Procedure, and Criminal Procedure (either Criminal Procedure I or Criminal Procedure II) prior to the semester in which the student will be enrolled in the CJC (concurrent enrollment in the CJC and the above-mentioned courses is not permitted);
- Eligibility for admission to engage in the limited practice of law in the District of Columbia pursuant to Rule 48 of the Rules of the D.C. Court of Appeals;
- Timely completion of an application for enrollment in the CJC; and
- Be interviewed and approved for enrollment by the faculty of the CJC.
- Attendance at a mandatory pre-semester orientation program.
Enrollment in the CJC is limited to sixteen (16) students per year. A student must register for the CJC during the Law Schoolís pre-registration period in the spring. Pre-registration, however, does not preclude the need to satisfy the eligibility requirements for enrollment, nor does pre-registration remove the necessity for faculty approval to enroll in the Clinic. As noted above all enrolled students must attend a mandatory multi-day orientation session held in August prior to the beginning of the regular fall semester.
Civil Rights Clinic (CRC)
The Civil Rights Clinic litigates on behalf of indigent clients in civil rights and social justice cases. Students in the clinic represent pro se plaintiffs in federal and state appeals before the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, the United Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, and the District of Columbia Court of Appeals.
Cases include a range of civil rights matters such as employment and housing discrimination, police brutality, denial of full voting rights, unconstitutional prison conditions, and procedural barriers that preclude indigent litigants from effective access to the courts. Students work with faculty in classroom-seminar and clinical-practice settings to review the trial court record, prepare the appendix for appeal, consult with the client, research and write the appellate briefs, and prepare and conduct oral argument when such argument is granted by the court.
The pedagogical goal of the Clinic is for students and faculty to critically examine the analytical and linguistic challenges of effective courtroom advocacy, the legal and strategic considerations of the appellate process, the ethical and professional obligations of client representation, and the social and political implications of civil rights advocacy.
The CRC is a four-credit (4), one-semester clinic and will be open to a maximum of 10 students, depending on the cases that the Clinic accepts.
Eligibility and Prerequisites
- Successful completion of (4) semesters of law school study;
- Successful completion of a course in Civil Procedure, and Constitutional Law prior to the semester in which the student will be enrolled in the CRC. (Students are also strongly encourage to complete a course in Federal Courts and Civil Rights);
- Submission of a legal writing sample;
- Eligibility for admission to engage in limited practice before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit pursuant to Local Rule 46A, before the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit pursuant to Local Rule 46g, and in the District of Columbia pursuant Rule 48 of the Rules of the D.C. Court of Appeals;
- Timely completion of an application for enrollment in the CRC; and
- Interview and approval for enrollment by the faculty of the CRC.
Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Clinic
The Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Clinic is an eight (8) credit, year-long clinical course offering. The course is open to a maximum of ten (10) students each year. Students wishing to enroll in the ADR Clinic must take the ADR survey course as a prerequisite to enrolling in the ADR Clinic.
The ADR Clinic has a classroom component as well as an actual case-handling component. The classroom component includes two seventy-five (75) minute seminars per week, during which students study the choices that lawyers make (often without reflection) about the processes available for the resolution of their clientís disputes.
Through the use of simulated exercises, the classroom component will give students an opportunity to learn how to represent clients in dispute resolution processes other than litigation. Finally, students will learn the skills necessary to function as an effective third-party in various disputes. The seminar also will allow students to explore the legal issues which are extant in the still-emerging field of alternative dispute resolution, such as:
- the problem of power imbalance between disputants in mediation;
- the meaning of confidentiality in mediation;
- the need for certification and/or licensing of mediators;
- the ethical issues in mediation; and
- the role of culture and diversity in the field of alternative dispute resolution.
The actual cases to be handled by the students will come from several sources. The Clinic has established a relationship with the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission (EEOC) whereby students provide intake services and co-mediate with experienced professionals on employment disputes.
Another source will be disputes among students at Howard University arising from the University Judiciary system and the Office of Residence Life. This mediation program will be an important addition to the services offered to undergraduate students.
A final source of cases would be small claims matters in the courts of the District of Columbia. Students will co-mediate cases with the officials in the Multi-Door Dispute Resolution Service. To prepare the students to begin to mediate cases as early in the semester as possible, all students who enroll in the ADR clinic must participate in an orientation session prior to the start of the semester or very near to the beginning of each semester. Any student failing to complete the forty-hour training program will be dropped from the ADR Clinic. The training session will include at least a full day on a Friday, a Saturday and a Sunday. No exceptions will be made as to participation in the orientation session.
Upon completing the forty-hour training, those who are deemed by the instructor to be prepared would then co-mediate with the instructor and/or with seasoned mediators who have volunteered to assist with the ADR Clinic. Those students deemed not yet prepared to participate as co-mediators would continue to develop their skills through the classroom component of the Clinic. They would also work with various organizations to identify appropriate cases for mediation and participate in other community education and outreach activities to educate the public of the uses and benefits of ADR.
Fair Housing Clinic
In the Fair Housing Clinic, students work directly with clients on housing discrimination and landlord-tenant matters as advocates, researchers and advisers, and engage in innovative and targeted community education and outreach projects. In addition to working directly with clients, students may be trained as ďFair Housing Testers,Ē allowing them to identify and investigate discriminatory housing practices, which may ultimately form the basis for a Fair Housing lawsuit.
The Fair Housing Clinic has two sections to accommodate students who wish to take a second semester of the clinic. Each section is offered as a four-credit, semester long clinical course. In the classroom component, students will study various aspects of the provision of public and private housing in the United States, including the laws prohibiting discrimination, according to race, gender, disability, family size, etc. Particular emphasis will be placed on the Fair Housing Act of 1968 and amendments of 1988, as well as the Americans with Disabilities Act and other state and local proscriptions on discrimination in housing. Additionally, students will study D.C. laws and regulations related to tenancies and housing conditions.
Students in the Fair Housing clinic may be required to obtain student bar licenses issued by the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. If so, the Supervising Attorney will give you a date that your application is due. CLC will then obtain the Deanís certification and submit the applications to the District of Columbia Court of Appeals.
Returning students must successfully complete the initial semester and be approved for enrollment by the Supervising Attorney. Returning Fair Housing Clinic students also receive 4 credits for the semester long clinical course and will take on leadership roles in casework and in the design and implementation of outreach and education programs. New students are required to participate in a mandatory orientation program. The clinic is open to second and third year students.
Investor Justice & Education Clinic (IJEC)
Howard Lawís Investor Justice and Education Clinic (IJEC) began officially in Fall 2010, following the awarding of a grant by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation. Second and third year law students are allowed to apply for enrollment. IJEC is operated as a four (4) hour, one semester course, with the opportunity to enroll in an additional semester as an advanced student and is open to up to 8-10 students per semester.
In order to enroll in the IJEC clinic, students must apply, be interviewed and accepted by the Supervising Attorney or CLC Director. In order to qualify for the IJEC students must successfully complete a pre-requisite or co-requisite course in Securities Regulation, broker-dealer regulation, or Introduction to Investment Law and Practice. We also recommend that students take evidence, trial advocacy, and alternative dispute resolution.
IJEC will combine classroom instruction with work on actual cases. Students attend three hours of classroom instruction per week, to include the necessary law, legal and business skills required to successfully resolve small investor claims.
This will include regulation of securities pursuant to the Securities Acts of 1933 and 1934; the regulatory scheme of broker-dealers imposed by securities laws and the role of various organizations; how to analyze account statements and recognize trading violations; the alternative dispute methods to settle a claim; arbitration procedures and rules of the customer forums; portfolio theory and management strategy; how capital markets and financial instruments interact; the pricing and market mechanisms of complex financial instruments; and statutory interpretation.
Classes also include case rounds, analysis of ethical, strategic and client representation issues, litigation planning and litigation skill development. Students work on cases accepted by the Supervising Attorney and man the intake system (which is currently an integral component of the clinical program at Howard Law) by devoting in-office hours each week to the Clinic.
Students work on actual case matters with assignments to include interviewing clients by telephone and in person, case analysis and evaluation of investor documentation, determination of client eligibility and the size of the investorís potential loss, drafting of statements of claim and other pleadings, briefs and interrogatories, investigating and researching various issues and claims, as well as research and preparation of memoranda or amicus briefs and moot court arguments on relevant pending cases.
Additionally, students design, implement and participate in the outreach and citizen education activities of the Clinic, to include participation in at least one major outreach/training event per semester. Community outreach programs are designed to provide investment education to the local investing community by, among other things, conducting investment workshops and seminars. Education and outreach projects are planned well in advance and will leverage contacts and relationships with many outside community associations, faith-based organizations and government agencies.
The Clinic holds these programs either at the Law School or in the community, in which the investors and potential investors live, work or socialize.
Intellectual Property and Trademark Clinic (IP Clinic)
Howard University School of Law is one of only sixteen (16) law schools selected to participate in the United States Patent and Trademark Officeís (USPTO) Law School Clinic Certification Program (Trademarks). As a result, this 3-credit semester-long course was created, for which a maximum of ten (10) students will be selected.
The IP & Trademark Clinic course includes a classroom seminar and actual client representation. The one evening per week, hour and fifteen minute classroom seminar includes a review of trademark law & federal registration procedures. The practice includes the representation of individuals and small businesses in their efforts to secure federal trademark registrations with the USPTO.
Student-practitioners are responsible for all aspects of representing clients, under the direct supervision of the CJC faculty. The practice includes, but is not limited to: adhering to the USPTOís ethics rules; client interviewing and counseling (e.g., gathering information; reviewing & reporting-out Office Actions & Notices); trademark selection and clearance (e.g., conducting searches; ordering & reviewing search reports; rendering availability opinions) and all aspects of preparing, filing & prosecuting trademark applications before the USPTO (e.g., reviewing Office Actions and drafting responses thereto; legal research).
Eligibility and Prerequisites:
- Successful completion of the Trademark Law course;
- Timely completion of an application for enrollment in the IP & Trademark Clinic;
- Be interviewed and approved for enrollment by the faculty of the IP & Trademark Clinic; and
- Timely completion of a separate USPTO application for temporary admission to practice before the USPTO in trademark matters.
Child Welfare Legal Clinic
Howard Law’s new Child Welfare/Family Justice Clinic is the latest clinical opportunity under the Clinical Law Center (CLC) as the result of a contract awarded by the D.C. Superior Courtís Counsel for Child Abuse and Neglect (CCAN) Office. This Clinic will be offered for credit to third year law students who are eligible for admittance under the Student Practice Rule of the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. The Clinic is an eight (8) credit, year-long course.
The Clinic will serve up to 12 students per year. In order to enroll in the Clinic, students will have to apply, be interviewed and accepted by the Supervising Attorney or the CLC Director, the same process the CLC uses for all of its other clinical programs. Eligible students must have taken a course in Criminal Procedure and Evidence, and to have undertaken prerequisite or co-requisite courses such as Family Law, Family Law Practice, Children and the Law, Domestic, or Adoption Law, Preference for admittance will be given to those students currently participating in our previously established Family Law Certificate Program.
The Child Welfare/Family Justice Clinic will combine classroom instruction with work on actual cases. Students will attend three hours of classroom instruction per week, to include the necessary law, legal, ethical and advocacy training and skills required to successfully represent adults involved in child abuse and neglect cases, including Client Interviewing Skills, Trial Advocacy Skills, Family Division Practices and Procedures, DC Rules of Professional Conduct, DC Code Title 16 and Child Abuse & Neglect Attorney Practice Standards.
Classes will also include case rounds, and analysis of ethical, strategic and client representation issues, litigation planning and litigation skill development. Students will work on cases appointed to the Clinic by the Family Court Division of the District of Columbia Superior Court and accepted by the Supervising Attorney. They will work on actual case matters with assignments to include interviewing clients by telephone and in person, case analysis and adherence to Child Abuse and Neglect Practice Standards. Their case work will include factual investigation and research of various issues and claims, court appearances, team meetings with other service providers, and community outreach projects, as well as research and preparation of pleadings, motions, memoranda and oral arguments on relevant pending cases.
Students will staff the intake system (which is currently an integral component of the clinical program at Howard Law) by devoting in-office hours each week to the Clinic and which include interviewing and triage of requests for representation which come from write-ins, walk-ins, radio PSAs, e-mails via our clinical program’s website www.law.howard.edu, and referrals from outside organizations.
This course is designed to introduce students to a broad array of advocacy and advisory skills and substantive law to enable them to provide direct legal representation to parents who have or are alleged to have neglected or abused their children in a way that has resulted in state intervention.
General Externship Program
The objective of the Externship Program is to teach students, through practical experiences, about the operation of the legal system and the role of lawyers in that system. Students enrolled in the Program work for one semester at a designated field placement at a public (i.e., governmental), nonprofit, or public interest institution or agency in the metropolitan Washington, D.C. area. In addition, students may work in a private law firm provided that the studentís work is of a public interest nature or relates to a pro bono matter undertaken by the firm. Students are also required to attend and participate in a weekly 75-minute seminar taught by CLC faculty. The seminar focuses on a variety of issues and topics including, but not limited to the development of lawyering skills, problems arising at the placement site, ethical issues, discussion of other issues relating to placements, and career opportunities for public interest lawyers.
No enrollment will be permitted, or credit given, for a paid externship. Evaluation will be based on the studentís performance at the placement site (by the law school supervisor and the field supervisor), participation in classroom sessions, and periodic reviews of the studentís journal. A grade of ďpass or no-passĒ will be awarded.
A. Fall and Spring Semester Programs
During the Semester Program, students are required to work twelve (12) hours per week for thirteen (13) weeks, and must attend a seventy-five (75) minute weekly seminar. A student shall not be permitted to work in excess of twelve (12) hours per week at a placement site. Additionally, students are required to keep a journal of the studentís reflections and activities at the placement site.
A student shall receive four (4) hours of academic credit upon successful completion of the Semester Program. A student enrolled in the Externship Program shall not be permitted to enroll in a ďlive-clientĒ clinical course offering during the same semester in which the student is enrolled in the Semester Externship Program. The maximum number of students enrolled in the Externship Program in any semester shall not exceed twenty (20) students.
B. Summer Program
A maximum number of ten (10) eligible students will be permitted to complete their field placement during the summer (i.e., between the months of May and August) and to concurrently participate in the classroom component. Summer Program students must work a minimum of thirty-two (32) hours for ten (10) weeks and maintain a reflective journal of the studentís activities at the placement site. A student shall receive six (6) hours of academic credit upon successful completion of the Summer Program.
C. Eligibility and Prerequisites:
- Successful completion of two (2) semesters of law school study;
- Successful completion of a course in Legal Reasoning, Research & Writing;
- Selection of a placement which has been approved by Externship professor;
- Written agreement of the Attorney Field Supervisor at the field placement that the placement will adhere to the responsibilities imposed by the Law School; and
- Be interviewed and approved for enrollment by Externship faculty.
The SEC Externship is a collaborative program offered by the CLC. It is taught by ProfessorS Cheryl Nichols and Bruce Sanders, who are experts in securities regulation and related areas. Students who are accepted into the program are placed in the SECís Law Student Observer Program, which ďprovides exposure to the workings of the Commission and to the regulation of securities and securities markets.Ē or approved securities regulations agencies.
Externs are assigned to one of the Commissionís Divisions or Offices at its headquarters in Washington, D.C.; they are assigned to specific Commission staff to work on projects such as investigations of industry and issuer practices, administrative and civil enforcement actions, drafting of proposed statutes and rules, and analyzing international securities regulations and rules and must establish a working schedule with their supervisors.
Also, HUSL Externs are required to attend educational seminars taught by senior Commission staff and prominent members of the private securities bar on a weekly basis. The SEC Externship provides an exceptional opportunity to learn about aspects of securities law and practice otherwise unavailable at HUSL. Also, HUSL Externs are exposed to excellence in governmental and public interest lawyering, which facilitates development of insights into the skills required for lawyering unobtainable in a conventional classroom. Students are also required to attend and participate in a weekly 75-minute seminar taught by the Professor.
The seminar focuses on a variety of issues and topics including, but not limited to, an overview of the mission and operations of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, ethics in securities law practice, development of lawyering skills, problems arising at the placement site, discussion of other issues relating to placements, and career opportunities for securities lawyers.
The SEC Externship is a four (4)-credit course graded on a Pass/Fail basis. You are required to work 15-20 hours per week for at least 13 weeks. Students may not get paid for any portion of the field placement for which they are receiving credit. Evaluation will be based on the studentís performance at the placement site (by the law school supervisor and the field supervisor), participation in classroom sessions, periodic reviews of the studentís journal, and other assignments by the professor.
In the seminar, the instructor exposes students to the practices, policies and procedures of the IRS, as well as the substantive tax laws that govern the work of the Service. Externs secure a field placement with the IRSí General Counselís Office and are assigned to work on a variety of projects. Like the SEC Externship, Howard Externs focus on excellence in governmental and public interest lawyering, social justice issues and professional responsibility. These key components are echoed in the work done at the field placement, as well as during the weekly 75 minute required classroom seminars taught by the instructor.
The IRS Externship is a four (4)-credit course graded on a Pass/Fail basis. Students are required to work 15-20 hours per week for at least 13 weeks (or other requirement set by Professor Gresham). Students may not get paid for any portion of the field placement for which they are receiving credit. Evaluation will be based on the studentís performance at the placement site (by the law school supervisor and the field supervisor), participation in classroom seminars, periodic reviews of the studentís journal, written work and/or other assignments by the supervising professor.
Environmental Justice Clinical Externship (Fall Only)
Howard Lawís Clinical Law Center has entered into a unique collaboration with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a nationally recognized environmental advocacy and litigation firm with a variety of initiatives in many areas of environmental and public health, to establish an environmental law clinical program at the school.
In this clinical offering, Howard Law professors in conjunction with NRDC attorneys, public interest and environmental professionals, as well as government officials will expose students to different aspects and perspectives in environmental law. Students will use experiential learning techniques to reflect upon the work of the environmental lawyer, public interest lawyers in general and litigation in non-profit agencies. Students will work on actual cases at the NRDC, will give topical presentations to the class during seminar sessions, and will prepare for and present a moot court argument.
The EJ Clinic will accept up to a maximum of eight (8) students per semester in which it is offered. Students will receive 4 credits for successful completion of the course which will be graded on a pass/fail basis. While there are no prerequisites for the course, recommended companion courses are Administrative Law, Introduction to Environmental Law, Sustainable Development and Environmental Justice. Students must submit applications to the CLC during the regularly scheduled application period and will be interviewed by the Equal Justice Program Coordinator or attorneys from NRDC. While third year students are preferred, second year students with a particular interest in the field will be considered.
A. The Seminar
Students in the Environmental Justice Clinic will meet for a two hour classroom session each week. These sessions will be devoted to the discussion of environmental law and policy and many will include a substantive presentation by an NRDC attorney or a distinguished visiting speaker. Students will be engaged in discussions on current issues in environmental law, environmental policy, and/or environmental lawyering skills, advocacy, legislative strategy, or administrative environmental regulation. One session per semester or extended class periods will be dedicated to a moot court exercise relating to a pending environmental case or timely issue. Each student will be expected to give a brief presentation to the class during the second half of the semester on an important environmental law or justice issue.
The Environmental Justice Clinic emphasizes environmental policy and litigation with a public interest perspective. Clinic participants will work under the supervision of attorneys at the Natural Resources Defense Council in Washington, D.C. Approximately 10 to 15 hours of work per week is required. Students will be exposed to a variety of environmental issues including: protection of Washington, DCís drinking water, Anacostia River, energy efficiency, global warming, public health, clean air, and water pollution.
revised: April 21, 2015