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The Clinical Legal Education Program is one of the most important and valued aspects of a Harvard Law School education, confirming our commitment to providing our students with the best possible educational experience. With dozens of in-house clinics and hundreds of externships, Harvard Law School has more clinical opportunities than any law school in the world. Some of the clinics include:



Clinical education at HLS helps to introduce and explore the roles and responsibilities of a lawyer. Taking a clinical course may aid students in thinking about what sort of law practice or lawyering work they like most. Mentored practice, in an educational setting, also helps students begin to understand their learning styles while getting a head start on learning the skills they will need when they begin their careers.

The Clinical Legal Education Program at Harvard Law School has three basic components:

  • direct student responsibility for clients in a realistic practice setting;
  • supervision and mentoring by an experienced practitioner; and
  • companion classroom sessions in which clinical experience supports and contributes to further discussion and thought.

Seventy-five percent of the class of 2015 participated in clinical work while at HLS. Many students find that this practical lawyering produces a sense of personal accomplishment as well as professional development because, in many cases, they are truly increasing access to justice for the most marginalized members of society. HLS also offers externship placements at various government agencies, nonprofits, and small firms. Many students take advantage of the winter term, spending three to four weeks off campus in a clinical setting and then coming back to campus and continuing the work remotely for the following semester. Students can also design independent clinical work projects that are tailored to unique interests.

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Senior Partners for Justice Public Service Volunteer Internship in the Probate and Family Court- Fall 2018

August 20, 2018

Senior Partners for Justice, a unique pro bono initiative of the Volunteer Lawyers Project, offers an internship program for law students who want to provide critical assistance to low-income clients while gaining valuable insight into the daily operations of the Probate and Family Court. ABOUT SENIOR PARTNERS FOR JUSTICE Founded in 2002 by Hon. Edward […]

A Deep Commitment to Helping Immigrants

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Via Harvard Law Today By Katie Noah Gibson While the Trump administration’s family separation practices have marked a shift in U.S. immigration policy, the issues surrounding immigration are not new. Many HLS alumni and students are engaged in legal and advocacy work related to immigration, including the situations of refugees and asylum seekers. For some […]

Will the Supreme Court Follow the Catholic Church’s Position on the Death Penalty?

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Via Time Following the Vatican’s rejection of the death penalty, faculty sponsor of the Capital Punishment Clinic Carol Steiker and co-author Jordan Stieker discuss how the U.S. could catalyze progress towards global abolition of capital punishment if the Supreme Court constitutionally abolished the practice. Read here.

Emmett Clinic Files Amicus Briefs in Cases Challenging EPA Science Advisory Board Directive

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Ninth Circuit Rules Cross-Border Killing Violated the Victim’s Fourth Amendment Rights

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Via the Cyberlaw Clinic The Ninth Circuit issued an important decision last week in Rodriguez v. Swartz, allowing a Mexican mother to sue a United States government official over a cross-border shooting. The Court held that the defendant — Border Patrol agent Lonnie Swartz — violated the Fourth Amendment rights of 16-year-old Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez […]