Academics: Professional Training

Employment Law Clinic


This yearlong clinic is designed to give students first-hand experience in the practice of employment law, from both the plaintiff and defense sides.

In cooperation with the Legal Aid Justice Center and local attorneys, students participate throughout the year in litigating actual employment cases. These cases may include wrongful discharge actions, unemployment compensation claims, employment discrimination charges or any other claims arising out of the employment relationship. Specific assignments will vary according to the inventory of cases available at the time, but students should be able to conduct client interviews, participate in discovery, draft motions and assist with trial preparation. Students also may argue some motions (with appropriate Third Year Practice Certification); 2Ls may provide direct representation in Unemployment Insurance Hearings.

Students receive classroom instruction only during the fall semester in the substantive and procedural aspects of employment litigation, from client interviewing and counseling through formal and informal fact gathering, drafting administrative charges of discrimination, Complaints, discovery, participating in simulated mediation, depositions, motions arguments, opening statements and closing arguments, all of which are considered in grading. Motions and trial advocacy skills are taught and refined in the context of an employment discrimination case. There is no classroom instruction during the spring semester, but the clinical aspect of the course (participating in actual cases under the supervision of an attorney) is required both semesters. Students will be expected to arrange a satisfactory schedule with their supervising attorney.

For additional information about the employment and labor law curriculum, visit the PELLS website. Students earn three credits during the fall semester and five credits during the spring semester.