Youth Advocacy Clinic

Youth Advocacy Clinic

Youth Advocacy Clinic

In the yearlong clinic, students represent low-income children in the context of education and the justice system.
This yearlong clinical course is offered in partnership with the Legal Aid Justice Center, and course meetings are held onsite at the firm. LAJC’s clinics are designed to educate students about the range of strategies used by attorneys to identify, investigate and attack systemic injustices, encouraging holistic and community-partnered approaches to lawyering.

All of the clinics hosted by Legal Aid Justice Center are designed to educate students about the range of strategies used by attorneys to identify, investigate and attack systemic injustices, encouraging holistic and community-partnered approaches to lawyering.  The Youth Advocacy Clinic’s casework is focused predominantly on education and juvenile delinquency law and policy. Clinic participants can expect to engage in a variety of lawyering activities, and their experiences may include:  carrying out factual investigation and data analysis; researching and analyzing state and federal law; advising and counseling clients; negotiating with public agencies on behalf of clients, and representing clients in litigation against public agencies in administrative and judicial proceedings; representing clients in adversarial hearings in Virginia juvenile and circuit courts; community organizing to engage and promote local client communities; developing and implementing legal education programming for our client communities; and collaborating with advocates and allies in local and statewide law and policy change campaigns.

Students will meet weekly for two hours at the Legal Aid Justice Center (1000 Preston Ave.) for instruction and case supervision. During the fall semester, the two-hour weekly class session will include the clinical seminar, which will provide students with an understanding of the legal obstacles confronting low-income youth, the various legal systems and settings in which the law students will practice, and generalized instruction regarding the representation of clients. Additionally, students will meet in small groups with their supervising attorneys for additional case and project supervision as necessary, and the supervising attorneys will accompany students to all administrative and/or court hearings. Because students will participate in visits to juvenile correctional centers to provide incarcerated youth with access to counsel, a background check may be required.

IMPORTANT: All clinic participants must attend an “Orientation to Law Clinics at LAJC” session at the start of the semester. This session will provide clinic participants with necessary information about working with LAJC and its client community. It will be held on Monday, Aug. 29 from 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m.

Skills Taught
Represent children in negotiations and administrative hearings, court procedure, legal research, policy work
Course Length
Yearlong
Grading
CR/NC (fall); H/P/F (spring)
Course Credits
8 (4 fall/4 spring)
Application?
Instructors

Clinics