Welcome to the University of Florida Levin College of Law Academic Program. Externships combine work experience in a law practice setting with an academic component and allow students to earn credit for their experiences. Externships are available to second and third year students.
We encourage you to participate in an externship in order to: begin applying the doctrine learned in school to the practice of law; explore practice areas in which you have an interest; develop the professional skills needed in your future careers; develop a career network; and begin creating your legal work resumes.
Our Local Externship program allows students to work between 8 and 17 hours per week while also taking in person classes at the law school. Third year students are also eligible to participate in our Semester in Practice (SIP) program, which allows them to work 20-38 hours per week, and earn up to 10 externship credits in the location of their choice. Participation in SIP also requires registration in a mandatory 2 credit companion course. Additional information specific to SIP can be found here: Semester in Practice.
Externships can be developed at a wide variety of sites, locally, state-wide and even nationwide. You may extern with a state or federal court; a federal, state or local agency; a public interest or legal services organization, or a corporate general counsel’s office. You may not extern for a private law firm or for an explicitly partisan organization.
To identify existing opportunities that match your interests or to find new opportunities, you can speak with your advisor, Professor Wolking or Dean Menendez. A list of previous externship sites is available in the Documents Library on Symplicity. Additionally, externship opportunities are regularly posted on Symplicity. Keep in mind, however, that not all opportunities make for appropriate externships. Please make sure that you confirm that you will be able to earn credit before you finalize your plans.
We also work with attorneys and judges who would like to work with our students. If you are interested in becoming an approved externship site, please complete the new externship site form and return it to firstname.lastname@example.org. We can advertise a position on Symplicity, our career services portal.
Externship credits vary depending on the number of hours you commit to work during the semester. You may register for 2-5 credits during the fall and spring semesters. If you are required to be registered for summer credits (for CLI or other reasons) you may register for 2-6 externship credits during the summer. For each credit that you register for, you must work 45 hours. Additionally, you are expected to work throughout the 13-week semester, even if you are able to complete your required hours earlier. Typically, students register for 2-3 credits for a local Externship. You should speak with your site supervisor to determine how much work they will be able to give you during the semester. Keep in mind that you may not change your credits after drop/add, so be realistic as to how much you are able to work.
Fall and summer externship credits are paid for like all other credits- as part of your block tuition. Summer credits, however, are not covered by block tuition or scholarship funds, so you will have to pay for those credits separately. In order to register for summer externship credit, you must first get approval from your advisor. Additionally, you may wish to speak with financial aid to help determine how many credits you will register for, and what type of financial aid you are eligible for.
Under normal circumstances, you are not allowed to participate in remote externships. However, in response to the Covid 19 public health crisis, we are allowing students to work remotely during the fall of 2020. Even if a placement is remote, if the circumstances allow, we encourage you to have at occasional in person meeting with your supervisor. We will continue to evaluate the situation and make adjustments as needed for future semesters.
Students may begin the externship registration process by completing the Externship Registration Request form. If you are requesting registration for an externship with an organization that has not been previously approved, we will need the completed new externship site form, in order to determine if the site is appropriate. If we are able to make that determination, we will register you for the credits.
Professor Sarah Wolking
Director of Externships
Professor Silvia Menendez
Assoc. Dean for Experiential Learning