Mission of the Gonzaga Law Externship Program
The Externship Program provides students with opportunities:
- for professional development and self-reflection;
- to obtain practical lawyering skills;
- to create or expand professional networks; and
- to assess and gain insight into the workings of the legal system.
The Gonzaga Law Externship Program is administered by the Center for Professional Development.
- Students may only participate in the Externship Program for two semesters. This limitation ensures that all students have an opportunity to participate in the Program.
- Placements are typically for one semester only. If a student has previously worked at a placement in any capacity (intern, volunteer, or extern) and wishes to continue at that placement, the student must submit an Addendum: Application for Approval of Prior Work Site. This form can be found in the Externship Program folder in the Resource Library on ZagLAW.
- Students may schedule an appointment on ZagLAW for assistance in planning their experiential learning during their time at Gonzaga.
- Each externship site and supervising attorney must be vetted and approved by the Externship office. The factors that are considered during the vetting process are contained in the Approval of Externship Placements.
- Potential placements include private law firms, government agencies, non-profit organizations, in-house counsel offices, and judicial chambers throughout the country.
- Students must be supervised by a licensed attorney with a minimum of three years of experience. Family members may not be supervisors.
- Upon approval, students may extern with or without pay at non-profit, government, and in-house counsel placements.
- Upon approval, students may extern at multi-attorney, private law firms if they student is paid and the firm complies with all labor and employment laws.
- US Attorney’s Office and Federal Defenders of Eastern Washington & Idaho
- Prosecutor and public defender offices throughout the country
- Federal and state government offices throughout the country
- Civil legal aid offices (e.g., Columbia Legal Services, Northwest Justice Project) throughout the country focusing on issues including domestic violence, immigration, housing, consumer law, criminal justice reform, civil rights, and more.
- Federal and state appellate and trial courts throughout the country.
- Local, multi-attorney, private law firms
- Possibly. Full-time externships may be permitted, if the student’s credit/academic requirements can be met and the placement is approved. Students should schedule an appointment on ZagLAW to discuss this possibility well in advance of the Externship Program application deadline.
- Students who wish to complete a distance (i.e., out of the Spokane or Coeur d’Alene area) externship as a full-time student should schedule an appointment on ZagLAW at least a semester in advance to discuss this possibility with the Externship Program and allow sufficient time to have the placement approved.
- Students apply for the Externship Program by completing the Externship Application under the Experiential Learning tab on ZagLAW. Applications may be submitted at any time prior to the deadline, announced each semester in Morning Mail and on the ZagLAW home page.
- Students may apply for an externship prior to completing 30 credits but they may not begin an externship prior to completing 30 credits.
- A student is not committed to an externship simply because they applied to the Externship Program. Once an application is received, the Externship Program will follow up with the student to discuss details. A student is committed to the Externship Program and the field placement once they have accepted a field placement.
- The Externship Program and the Gonzaga Clinical Law Program are administered separately. Information on the Gonzaga Clinical Law Program is available here.