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Professor Smothermon

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Externship Program

OU EXTERNSHIP PROGRAM - Info and Application

The Externship program offers a wide range of opportunities to work outside school. Through an externship, you can gain real work experience in specific areas of interest. Externships allow you to explore possible career paths and to clarify your professional goals. You receive three hours credit for 140 hours of work during the semester. Additionally, you must enroll in the Issues in Professionalism class. You do not need a legal intern's license to act as a legal extern. There are three general types of externships: judicial, public agency, and mediation. There are currently positions available in all three areas.

Judicial Externships allow you to work with state and federal judges to gain valuable insight into the workings of trial and appellate courts. These positions are usually research and writing intensive. Judicial externs perform a wide range of duties including reviewing documents and pleadings, researching and analyzing the law, court observations, and drafting memos and opinions. Students applying for judicial externships must demonstrate strong research and writing skills and strong interpersonal skills.

Public Agency Externships vary widely from agency to agency. Some examples include: D.A.'s offices, public health agencies, J.A.G. offices, educational agencies, and environmental agencies. Public Agency externs perform duties characteristic of the specific agency including case and evidence analysis, interviewing witnesses, drafting memos and letters, courtroom observation, case administration, and research. Students applying for Public Agency externships must have an interest in the work handled by that agency.

Mediation Externships are run through the Early Mediation Program which formally trains you in the mediation process. Mediators must have the ability to maintain confidences, exercise sound judgment and discretion, work collaboratively with others and foster effective working relationships with clients, courts, and judicial staff. After you complete the observation portion of the training, you will conduct full mediations on your own in Cleveland County. Mediation externs must complete a mandatory training the week before school starts.