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Fall 2023 Seminar

Lawyering for Children & Youth Clinical Seminar

To learn more about the Clinical Curriculum and Registration, please visit our Clinical Registration Center.
You can also find more information on How to Register for Clinics and How Clinical Credits Work.

For more information about this clinic, please visit the Clinic Website, Clinic Q&A and OCP Blog Highlights.

Required Clinic Component: Child Advocacy Clinic (4-5 fall clinical credits). This clinic and course are bundled; your enrollment in the clinic will automatically enroll you in this required course.

Additional Co-/Pre-Requisites: None.

By Permission: No.

Add/Drop Deadline: Early drop of August 1, 2023.

LLM Students: International students on F-1 student visas are required to have Curricular Practical Training (CPT) authorization; LL.M. students are not eligible for CPT.

The Child Advocacy Clinic is an externship clinic where students are placed for fieldwork in a legal setting in the child advocacy arena.  The course is the companion seminar.  The Clinic and accompanying seminar are designed to educate students about a variety of substantive areas impacting the lives of children, and the different systems that are meant to serve them.  In addition, the course exposes students to a range of system change strategies to encourage critical thinking about the pros and cons of different approaches. The Clinic is relevant not only for students with a particular interest in children’s issues, but also for those more generally interested in system change.

Enrollment Options: The Child Advocacy Clinic offers three different clinical fieldwork options: a fall-only clinic, a spring-only clinic, and a winter-spring clinic.  The clinical seminar is taken concurrently with the fieldwork.  All clinic students participate in both the classroom seminar and a clinical fieldwork component during the fall semester.

During the seminar, students bring into the classroom their varied fieldwork experiences, presenting on both specific projects and cases in which they are engaged, and also their placement organization’s larger vision for improving conditions for children involved in the child welfare, education, and juvenile legal systems. Students reflect on each other’s experiences, consider which strategies in the field are working and why, and evaluate the benefits and limitations of different approaches. Students will learn about and thoughtfully consider the unique legal issues affecting young people through reflections, readings and class discussions.

Once enrolled in the Clinic, the Youth Advocacy and Policy Lab (Y-Lab) will provide students with a list of fieldwork placement organizations and their potential projects. Students will give Y-Lab information about their background and interests and rank their placement preferences. Y-Lab will then match students with a placement based on their preferences, the organizations’ needs, and Y-Lab’s goal to provide students with a broad spectrum of experiences. Please note that the matching process takes place during the summer; enrolled students will need to be available to communicate with Y-Lab and their host organization about various details.  Visit the Child Advocacy Clinic webpage for a list of organizations where clinic students have been placed in prior years.

This course is part of the Youth Advocacy & Policy Lab (Y-Lab). Please see the Y-Lab website for information about other related courses.