RELATED LINKS

Application

Externship Placement Options

Students:

1. Please review information carefully as different placements have different application requirements. Please also indicate in your cover letter whether you are applying for the fall, spring, or summer semester.

2. When an organization indicates they will take 2Ls, they generally will consider 1Ls during the summer after their first year. Likewise, if the organization states they prefer a 3L, they will generally consider a 2L the summer after their second year.

3. Please contact the organizations directly to arrange externship placements. This list is by no means exhaustive of opportunities in the Houston area. If you are interested in a placement that is not on this list, please contact Professor Erma Bonadero at ecbonade@central.uh.edu to ensure the placement meets the Law Center’s requirements for academic credit.

Non-Profit Organizations

Non-Profit Organizations often provide an "in the trenches" experience geared towards representation of clients litigating in a specific area of law such as disability, family, housing or capital murder defense. Alternatively, others are focused on researching and formulating policy either for the organization itself or for more global legal issues. Representative placements include:

 

Government Offices and Agencies (state & federal)

A Government externship can be designed for experience in a particular field of specialization such as taxation or employment law. A broader range of legal issues can be explored in city or county attorney's offices. Representative placements include:

 

Health Law

  • University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB), Dep’t of Legal Affairs
  • The Methodist Hospital, Business Practices Office
  • The Methodist Hospital, Compliance Office
  • Texas Children’s Hospital,  Dep’t of Risk Management and Safety
  • U.S. Dep’t of Veteran Affairs, Office of Regional Counsel
  • Baylor College of Medicine, General Counsel's Office
  • M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Legal Compliance Dept.

 

DISABILITY RIGHTS TEXAS
DISABILITY RIGHTS TEXAS is a non-profit organization created and funded by the United States Congress to advocate for the legal and human rights of individuals with disabilities. It is the Protection & Advocacy system for the state of Texas.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Client interviews, draft pleadings, draft discovery, draft discovery responses, research, writing memos, assist with depositions, attend mediations, assist with intake and staffing of cases assist with trials and administrative hearings.
Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Law Student Volunteers and Summer Public Interest Fellow

Minimum hours: 4

Will accept: 1L, 2L, 3L and FLLM

Provide: Resume and Writing Sample

Contact Information:

Name: Elaine B. Roberts, Legal Director (CHANGE TO:  Connie Kristenson, Manager, East Texas Regional Office)

Address:1500 McGowan, Suite 100, Houston, TX 77004

Phone: 713-974-7691 (Houston)

Fax: 713-974-7695

Website:www.disabilityrightstx.org

Disability Rights Texas has 14 offices across the state and will accept applications for positions at all 14 locations. Please see website for list of locations. All resumes should be sent to Connie Kristenson, Eastern Texas Regional Office Manager regardless of location sought.

Return to top


American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)

Organization Information:

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is the nation’s leading civil liberties organization. As the nation's largest public interest law firm, we appear in more cases before the U.S. Supreme Court than any other entity except for the Solicitor General of the United States. The ACLU of Texas has approximately 16,000 members and is staffed by the Executive Director in Austin and the Houston Regional Director here in Houston.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Clerking at the ACLU in Austin or Houston involves an array of responsibilities including assessing cases for relevance to the ACLU, legal research, assisting with cases, community outreach, contact with cooperating attorneys and potential clients, legislative analysis and lobbying and generally running a non-profit office.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Summer Public Interest Fellow and Law Student Volunteers

Minimum hours:180 hours per semester

Will accept: 2L and 3L

Number of students needed: at least 2 per semester

Provide: Resume, Cover Letter, Writing Sample and References

Interview: Yes

Other Requirements: Student Bar Card. Constitutional Law, Evidence and Civil Procedure are recommended.

Contact Information:

Name: Maida Asofsky, Houston Regional Director

Address:1214 West Gray, Houston, TX 77019

Phone: 713-942-8146

Fax: 713-942-8966

Email: masofsky@aclutx.org

Website: www.aclutx.org

Return to top


Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF)

Organization Information:

ATF is a law enforcement agency within US Department of Justice. It’s unique responsibilities include protecting the public and reducing violent crime. ATF enforces the Federal laws and regulations relating to alcohol and tobacco diversion, firearms, explosives and arson. The Office of Division Counsel provides legal advice and training to assist ATF in the legal, ethical and responsible performance of their mission.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Extern will research criminal law issues, draft memorandums, draft opinion letters, become familiar with agency procedures and programs, identify issues that need immediate attention and perform other office duties as assigned.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern and Summer Public Interest Fellow

Will accept: 2L and 3L

Provide: Resume and Writing Sample

Other Requirements: Must be able to pass a background check for security.

Contact Information:

Name: Carla E. Young, Division Counsel, Houston

Address: Bureau of ATF, 15355 Vantage Pkwy West, Ste. 200, Houston, TX 77032

Telephone:281-372-2920

Please contact Attorney Andrew Lange for additional information at 281-372-2926.

Return to top


Catholic Charities

Organization Information:

The Cabrini Center for Immigrant Legal Assistance provides low cost and pro-bono legal services to immigrants in the greater Houston community. We work on family-visa petitions, asylum cases, VAWA cases, citizenship applications and outreach. We have worked with interns in the past and have a good system set up to provide a hands-on educational experience, while also serving the community.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Students will be provided to do different activities such as legal research; client intakes; clerical work and preparation of forms and follow-up case work.

Positions Considered:Fall Academic Intern, Spring Academic Intern, Summer Academic Intern, Law Student Volunteers, and Summer Public Interest Fellows

Number of Students Needed: 3

Will accept:1L, 2L,3L and LLM

Provide:Resume, Cover Letter, Writing Sample and Application

Other Requirements: Security/Background Check & Large Heart!

Contact Information

Name: Wafa Abdin, Supervising Attorney

Address:2900 Louisiana Street, Houston, TX 77006

Phone: 713-874-6570

Email: wabdin@catholiccharities.org

Return to top


Children's Assessment Center

Organization Information:

The Children's Assessment Center (CAC) provides a safe haven to sexually abused children and their families - a place where they can receive the kind of care and treatment they so richly deserve. The CAC employs an extraordinarily effective, multi-disciplinary team approach in the prevention, assessment, investigation, referral for prosecution and treatment of child sexual abuse. The goal of the CAC is to promote the complete healing of child victims of sexual abuse, as well as their families.

Contact Information:

Name:Karen Kennard

Address: 2500 Bolsover, Houston, TX 77005

Phone: 713-986-3300

Fax: 713-986-3553

Return to top


City of Houston, Legal Department

Organization Information:

Public and Municipal Law Practice; ten divisions: Business Litigation, handles commercial and construction litigation, hotel occupancy tax, franchise fee and other collections and contract disputes/litigation; Claims and Subrogation- investigate and recommend the resolution of property and personal injury claims, process health, property damage and workers compensation subrogation, monitor and report costs directly related to the payment of claims and judgments; Contracts- prepare, review and negotiate City contracts, research and analyze contract related legislation, draft contract related legal opinions, research/issue bid irregularity opinions and draft appropriation ordinances; Criminal Law- represent the State in most cases filed in the Municipal Courts, handle all expunction matters in District Court that involves the City; Defense Litigation- defend the City in personal injury, contractually, constitutional, and land use lawsuits, represent the City in injunctions brought against it.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Research (manual/online/electronic), brief review, drafting documents, review interrogations, case management/trial notebook, client interaction (some divisions), 2nd chair assistance in court (Criminal Division), attend and assist at public hearings (Land Use, Labor Divisions), general assistance as may be required by the attorney.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Law Student Volunteersand Summer Public Interest Fellow

Minimum hours: 25 + hours per week

Will accept: 2L, 3L and FLLM

Provide: Resume and Writing Sample

Other Requirements: Student Bar Card (for Criminal Law Division)

Contact Information:

Name: Vachel Henry

Address:900 Bagby Street, 4th Floor, Houston, TX 77002

Telephone: 713.247.1909

Email:vachel.henry@cityofhouston.net

Return to top


City of Missouri City

Organization Information:

Legal Department for the City of Missouri City, a municipal government for city with a population of approximately 60,000 located southwest of Houston, Texas

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students:Externs will be responsible for drafting ordinances, contracts, resolutions and memoranda of law; for conducting legal research; and for preparing submissions for outside agencies such as the Texas Attorney General's Office and the Department of Justice. The externship will also provide the opportunity to observe municipal court proceedings for students so interested.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Intern, Spring Academic Intern, Summer Academic Intern and Summer Public Interest Fellow

Will accept: 2L and 3L

Number of students needed: 1 spring and fall, 2 summer

Minimum Hours: 15-20 hours per week spring and fall, 25-40 hours per week summer

Provide: Resume, Cover Letter, Writing Sample and Application

Interview: Yes

Other Requirements: Security/Background Check, Drug/Alcohol Testing

Contact Information:

Name: Caroline Kelley, Interim City Attorney

Address: 1522 Texas Parkway, Missouri City Texas 77489

Phone: 281-403-8657

Fax: 281-403-0675

Website: www.ci.mocity.tx.us

Return to top


Department of Homeland Security, Office of Chief Counsel

Organization Information:

Federal Law Enforcement Agency with jurisdiction over the internal enforcement of immigration and custom laws as well as federal building protection.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students:Research and brief writing involving immigration issues for trial and appeals.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Intern, Spring Academic Intern, Summer Academic Intern and Law Student Volunteers

Minimum hours:240 per semester

Will accept: 2L, 3L or FLLM

Provide:Resume

Interview: Yes

Other Requirements: Several federal forms will be required and provided during the interview. Fingerprints and background data will be investigated before the person can enter on duty. Background checks can take up to 6-8 weeks, so it is recommended that students apply early.

Contact Information:

Name: Gary Goldman

Address: Department of Homeland Security, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, Office of Chief Counsel 126 Northpoint, Houston, Texas 77060

Telephone: 281-774-4722 or 281-774-4723

Return to top


Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)

Organization Information:

The Houston District Office (HDO) investigates about 4000 charges each year. These charges allege employment discrimination because of race, color, sex (including sexual harassment or pregnancy), national origin, religion, age (40 and older), disability (in private employment and the federal sector), retaliation because of protected activity and gender-based wage violations. The HDO Legal Unit consists of fourteen staff members including seven attorneys. Jim Sacher, Regional Attorney, and Rose Adewale-Mendes, Supervisory Trial Attorney, manage our litigation program. Both Jim and Rose have over twenty years legal experience. The five trial attorneys in the Legal Unit litigate cases in the federal courts of Southeastern Texas. The attorneys also provide legal advice and guidance to the thirty-five HDO investigators during the investigation of charges.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: The HDO Legal Internship program has been engaged in nurturing law students for over ten years. Our goal is to provide practical lawyering skills and an opportunity for the student to observe the operation of a federal field office that enforces civil rights. Our internship program gives each student an opportunity to develop and practice counseling and investigative skills. Each student will have an opportunity to work under the close supervision of one of our attorneys and will likely assist with pretrial discovery and attend depositions. Also, assignments are supplemented with some training. Some of this is accomplished by viewing training videotapes (most notably on negotiating skills and trial advocacy skills concerning opening and/or closing statements) and selected reading materials. We seek to expose the student to resources to facilitate developing generic skills the student will use throughout his/her career.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern,and Summer Public Interest Fellow

Contact Information:

Jim Sacher at 713 209 3398 or james.sacher@eeoc.gov. ,

Rose Adewale-Mendes at 713 209 3404 or rose.adewale-mendes@eeoc.gov.

Tim Bowne, Senior Trial Attorney, at 713 209 3395 or tim.bowne@eeoc.gov.

For general information about the EEOC see www.eeoc.gov.

Return to top


Environmental Protection Agency, Criminal Investigations Division
Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Research statutes and regulations involved in violations being investigated by Special Agents of the Criminal Investigations Division. Analyze facts with respect to the applicable statutes and regulations.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Law Student Volunteers and Summer Public Interest Fellow

Minimum hours: 10 hours per week

Will accept: 3L and LLM who have taken basic environmental and criminal procedure courses.

Provide: Resume and Transcript

Contact Information

Name: Bill Miller

Address: 1919 Smith Street, Suite 925, Houston, TX 77002

Telephone: 713-209-4909

EMAIL: miller.william@epa.gov

Return to top


Federal Public Defender

Organization Description:
The Federal Public Defender provides court-appointed counsel to individuals accused of federal crimes, who are unable to afford adequate representation.

Externship Information:
Description of Activities for Students: Research and write legal memoranda. Assist in preparing for hearings and trials. Meet with clients and witnesses. Some clerical duties.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Intern, Spring Academic Intern, Summer Academic Intern, Law Student Volunteers, Summer Public Interest Fellow

Minimum hours: 20

Will accept: 2L 3L

Provide: Resume Writing Sample

Contact Information:

Name: Marjorie Meyers

Address: 440 Louisiana, Suite 310, Houston, Texas 77002

Telephone: 713-718-4600

EMAIL: margy_meyers@fd.org

Return to top


Fort Bend County District Attorney's Office

Organization Information:

District Attorney’s Office for Fort Bend County, Texas

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Externs are assigned to work with trial court prosecutors and are expected to assist in courtroom activities, research assignments and trial preparation

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern and Law Student Volunteers

Minimum hours:15 hours per week

Will accept: 2Land 3L

Other Requirements: Should be eligible for student bar card.

Contact Information:

Name:Sherry Robinson

Address: 301 Jackson St., Houston, TX

Telephone: 281-341-4470

Return to top


Galveston County District Attorney's Office
Organization Information:
The organization represents the State of Texas and its citizens in the prosecution of crimes committed in the County of Galveston in accordance with our oath of office while diligently protecting the rights of victims. Yearly we screen, investigate, file, present to grand juries and prosecute approximately 15,000 cases including felony, misdemeanor, juvenile and child protective services cases.

Externship Information:
Description of Activities for Students: The extern will be exposed to and included in the day to day activities of a prosecutor's office. The extern will participate in the intake, screening, trial preparation and trail of criminal cases. The extern will perform research, participate in plea settings and negotiations, learn the appellate process, receive training in Crime Victims Rights and learn the processes involving Child Protective Services cases. The extern will attend protective order interviews and hearings. The externship experience in this office will give you enough information so that prosecution can be considered as a career path.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern and Law Student Volunteers
Minimum hours:180 or 240 per semester
Will accept: 2L, 3L, LLM and FLLM
Provide: Resume, Cover Letter and References
Interview: Yes
Other Requirements: Bar card preferred but not required; criminal history is researched

Contact Information:
Name: Joel H. Bennett, First Assistant
Address: 600 59th Street, Suite 1001, Galveston, TX 77551
Telephone: 409-766-2355
Fax: 409-766-2290
Email: joel.bennett@co.galveston.tx.us
Website: http://www2.co.galveston.tx.us/distatty/da.htm

Return to top

Gulf Region Advocacy Center (GRACE)

Organization Information:
The Gulf Region Advocacy Center, or GRACE, supports and provides quality representation to indigent persons charged with capital crimes in the state courts of Texas and Louisiana. The Director and several of the Board members are veteran capital trial lawyers who participated in building the Louisiana Crisis Assistance Center (LCAC) in New Orleans, Louisiana. The LCAC has developed an extremely successful method for investigating and presenting capital cases for indigent defendants. This method has been refined through dozens of capital cases in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. No such office or organization has ever existed in Texas. Texas has never had a public defender system. Though the Harris County District Attorney's Office has long maintained specialized units for capital trial and appellate work, never has there been a defender's office devoted exclusively to capital trials of the indigent where public interest lawyers can work together, share skills and materials, benefit from economies of scale, engage in systematic impact litigation and become specialists in indigent capital trials. GRACE is such an office.

Externship Information:
Description of Activities for Students:Because of the nature of the work at GRACE, we prefer that students have a professional interest in criminal law. The work of interns is extremely varied and dependent upon the needs of the office at the particular time. Current full-time GRACE staff and interns work long hours--usually 50-70 hours a week. However, GRACE will consider accepting part-time student interns during the academic year.

The ability and willingness of the students, matched against the workload of the office, largely dictates what tasks students will perform. Not only will students review documents, perform legal research and assist in writing motions, but students may also have the opportunity to meet with clients and their family members and to interview witnesses to assist in preparation for trial or post-conviction pleadings.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Law Student Volunteersand Summer Public Interest Fellow

Will accept: 1L, 2L, 3L and FLLM

Provide: Resumeand Transcript

Other Requirements: Applicants should be prepared to discuss their views on capital punishments, and may be asked to submit a short, informal essay on those views before they are accepted.

Contact Information:

Name:Aimee Solway
Address: 2307 Union Street Houston, 77007
Telephone: 713-869-4722

Return to Top


Harris County District Attorney's Office

Organization Information:
The Harris County District Attorney's Office prosecutes criminal cases occurring in Harris County, Texas. The office handles approximately 80,000 cases per year and employs over 230 lawyers. Cases range from traffic violations to capital murder cases in which the state is seeking the death penalty.

Externship Information:
Description of Externship Opportunities: Interns are assigned to work directly with experienced trial attorneys. Interns attend court proceedings daily and assist trial attorneys with witness and victim contact, process new charges and files, observe and assist with plea negotiations and formal please before the bench. Interns also observe and help with jury and bench trials and are allowed to try criminal jury trials or court hearings upon receipt of a third-year bar card.

Position Accepted: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Summer Public Interest Fellow and Law Student Volunteers

Will accept: 2L, 3L, LLM and FLLM

Number of students needed: 20-35 per semester

Minimum Hours: 180 per semester

Provide: Resume and Cover Letter

Interview: Yes- students apply and attend an informal interview on the same day

Other Requirements: Security/Background Check

Contact Information:

Name: Brian Rose, Assistant District Attorney
Address: 1201 Franklin, Suite 600, Houston, TX 77002
Phone: 713-755-5816
Fax: 713-368-9275
Email: rose_brian@dao.hctx.net

Return to top


Harris County Public Defenders’ Office

Organization description: The Harris County Public Defender’s Office (PDO) is a team of lawyers, investigators, social workers, and staff — all working together to help our clients. We have four attorney divisions: Felony Trial, Appellate, Juvenile, and Misdemeanor Mental Health. We strive to provide a strong, holistic defense to achieve the best result in every case, as well as to understand the needs of our clients beyond their criminal charges. We also work with the private defense bar and community leaders to advocate for progressive policy development and to attain the fair administration of justice.

Minimum hours: 20 per week

Will accept: 2L, 3L, LLM and FLLM

Contact:
Sarah V. Wood, Assistant Public Defender
1201 Franklin, 13th Floor, Houston, TX 77002
713.368.0016 (phone), 713.437.4329 (e-fax)
www.harriscountypublicdefender.org
Internapplications@pdo.hctx.net

Apply at: http://harriscountypublicdefender.org/about/internships/

 

Return to top


Houston Housing Authority

Organization Description: The Houston Housing Authority is a public housing authority governed by a five-member Board of Commissioners appointed by the Mayor of Houston. The Authority employs over 300 employees with an annual budget of over $160 million. The Authority administers the HUD Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher program, Low Income Public Housing program, and Disaster Voucher program. Additionally, the Authority is heavily involved in tax credit real estate development.

Externship Description: Externs will work in and be supervised by the Housing Authority’s Office of General Counsel. Available work will include: attending court hearings and trials in both justice court and county court; drafting lawsuit petitions, contracts, and memoranda; researching relevant issues involving local government, real estate, employment law, etc.; assisting with and occasionally acting as a hearing officer for administrative hearings.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern; Spring Academic Extern; Summer Academic Extern; Law Student Volunteer

Will Accept: 2Ls and 3Ls

Provide: Resume, Cover Letter, and Transcripts

Other Requirements: Drug Screening

Contact Information:
Marilyn Allen
Director, Human Resources Training & Development
Houston Housing Authority
2640 Fountainview Dr., 4th Floor
Houston, TX 77057

For more information, please contact Shelby Boseman, Attorney, at 713-260-0525 or sboseman@housingforhouston.com


Houston Volunteer Lawyers Program (HVLP)

Organization Information:

HVLP’s mission is to provide legal services to Houston’s poor by promoting volunteerism among the local bar.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Student will interview applicants for service and prepare files for referral; will be partnered with staff attorney for simple family law cases and preparation of simple estate planning packages; may assist with will clinics or Saturday legal advice clinics.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern and Summer Public Interest Fellow

Will accept:2L, 3L and LLM

Provide: Resume

Other Requirements: Prefer 2L or higher who has taken family law or with social services experience; prefer English-Spanish bilingual.

Contact Information:

Name: Barbara Urdiales

Address:712 Main St., Ste. 2700, Houston, TX 77002

Telephone:713-228-0735 ext. 122

Email: Barbara.urdiales@ehvlp.org

Return to top


Internal Revenue Service, Chief Counsel

Organization Information:

Office of Chief Counsel provides legal advice and representation to IRS in the administration of our nation's tax laws

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students:Students get exposure to our office by working under the supervision and with the assistance of experienced tax lawyers. Experiences depend on issues and cases. They could research legal tax issues, prepare memos of law, draft documents for court, attend conferences, etc.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern andSummer Academic Extern

Will accept:2L, 3L and LLM

Number of students needed: 1-2 per semester

Minimum Hours: 16 hours per week

Provide: Resume and Transcripts

Other Requirements: At least one tax course; more are preferred, fingerprints and tax check

Contact Information:

Name: Marilyn Ames, Associate Area Counsel, SBSE

Address: 8701 S. Gessner, Houston, TX 77074

Telephone: 281-721-7304

Return to top


Justice for Children

Organization Information:

Non-profit advocacy group for criminally abused children.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Legal research, case advocacy

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Law Student Volunteersand Summer Public Interest Fellow

Minimum hours:5 hours per week

Will accept:1L, 2L, 3L and FLLM

Provide: Resume

Other Requirements: Child abuse and the cases we work on are very troubling. Externs should expect to be exposed to cases involving children who are suffering from severe trauma.

Contact Information:

Name: Thomas Burton

Address:2600 Southwest Freeway #806, Houston, TX

Telephone:713-225-4357

Email: jshields@jfcadvocacy.org

Return to top


Lone Star Legal Aid

Organization Information:

Provides representation in civil matters to low income citizens of seventy-two counties in the eastern region of Texas.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students:Assisting staff attorney with the handling of client's legal problems

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern and Summer Public Interest Fellow

Will accept:2L and 3L

Provide: Resume

Contact Information:

Name: Robert Sohns

Address:1415 Fannin, Suite 300, Houston, TX 77002

Phone: 713-652-0077

Fax: 713-652-3815

Email:rsohns@lonestarlegal.org

Website: http://www.lonestarlegal.org/


Lone Star Legal Aid, Centralized Intake Unit

Organization Information:
Lone Star Legal Aid provides a full range of free legal services in civil matters only to low-income people. Our service area includes 72 east Texas counties and 4 counties in Southwest Arkansas. Approximately 1.1 million people who live in our service area are eligible to receive help from our 16 branch offices/units.

Externship Information:
Description of Activities for Students: The Centralized Intake Unit, housed in our downtown Houston office, will serve as the first point of contact for 85% of people seeking free legal assistance. Externs will be an integral part of our team of professionals whose task it will be to determine eligibility for our services and provide brief legal advice over the phone. Externs will be given appropriate training on how to use our new technology as well as substantive legal training on a variety of topics pertinent to the needs of our clients such as the following: consumer rights; family law; educational rights; rights of juveniles; health care issues; housing; public benefits; disability; employment; rights of the disabled; discrimination; landlord-tenant; wills and estates; and guardianships. Externs must have excellent verbal skills and enjoy helping others who are less fortunate. Compassion is required as is a team spirit. Externs may have opportunities to observe and assist our staff attorneys in representing our clients. It is expected that this will be a fast-paced environment, but we strive always to make it fun also.
Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Summer Public Interest Fellow and Law Student Volunteers
Will accept:2L, 3Land LLM
Number of students needed: at least 2 per semester*
Minimum Hours: 180 hours per semester
Provide: Resume, Cover Letter and References. Unofficial transcripts are helpful but not required.
Interview: Yes
Other Requirements: Security/Background Check. Professional Responsibility and Interviewing would be very helpful

* Adequately performing externs may be offered the opportunity to return to LSLA’s CIU in subsequent semesters as part-time paid employees.
Contact Information:

Name: Linda Good, Managing Attorney
Address:1415 Fannin, Suite 300, Houston, TX 77002
Phone: 713-652-0077
Fax: 713-652-3815
Email:lgood@lonestarlegal.org
Website: http://www.lonestarlegal.org/

Return to top


Office of the City Attorney, City of Houston (Environmental)

Organization Information

The City is focused on improving the quality of life in Houston by demonstrating that economic development and environmental protection are not independent of one another. Lawyers within the Office of the City Attorney assist the Mayor’s Office and also conduct investigations and may bring enforcement actions against companies that violate state and city pollution laws. The lawyers assess legislation, which may affect the environment and draft or revise city ordinances that deal with pollution, among other things.

Externship Information
Description of Activities for Students: Externs will be operating under the guidance of one of several experienced City Attorneys. Potential projects include: 1) research on permitting Coal Fired Power plants, including green house gas emissions, procedures before the TCEQ and Best available Control Technology determinations; 2) summarizing legislation which may affect the environment; 3) drafting and revising ordinances to limit the emission of toxic substances in Houston; or which may impede environmentally friendly/sustainable construction and development; 4) research regarding procedures before the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to consider permitting various facilities; 5) drafting comments on proposed rules at the state and federal level that may affect Houston; and 6) assisting environmental attorneys in assessing air and water pollution issues and bringing enforcement actions. The Intern/Extern will attend a monthly meeting with senior city staff, including the Mayor’s advisor on health and the environment. The intern/extern will be able to attend council committee meetings addressing environmental issues and council meetings when those items are on the agenda. This position offers a truly unique experience to see city government in action.
Positions Considered: Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern or Intern, Law Student Volunteers

Minimum hours: 15 + hours per week as class requires
Will accept: 2L, 3L, LLM
Number of students needed: 1 or 2 per semester
Provide: Resume, Cover Letter and Writing Sample
Interview: Yes

Contact Information
Name: Paulette Wolfson, Sr. Asst. City Attorney
Address:900 Bagby Street, Ste. 300 Houston, TX 77002
Telephone: 713-437-6708
Fax: 713-247-1014
Email: Paulette. Wolfson@cityofhouston.net


Montgomery County Women's Center

Organization Information:

The Montgomery County Women's Center provides safe shelter, crisis intervention, counseling, legal and support services to victims/survivors of family violence, sexual assault, stalking and abuse in Montgomery and surrounding counties. The Women's Center also provides education to the community about such issues. All services are free of charge. The Women's Center is a United Way agency funded in part by federal, state and local grants, including funding from the Community Development Block Grant program of Montgomery County .

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students : Students are needed at the Conroe legal office to assist attorneys and staff with the following: drafting pleadings; filing pleadings at the Montgomery County courthouse; performing legal research; communicating with clients, opposing counsel, and court staff; participating in court hearings and trial preparation in Montgomery County .

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Summer Public Interest Fellow and Law Student Volunteers

Minimum hours:180 hours per semester

Will accept: 2L , 3L, LLM, FLLM

Number of students needed: 1-2

Provide: Resume and Cover Letter

Interview: Yes

Contact Information:

Name: Pamela Kenner, Managing Attorney

Address: 731 West Davis , Conroe , TX 77301

Phone: 936-760-4179 ext. 300

Fax: 936-441-2087

Email: pamk@mcwcthewoodlands.org

For more information, contact: Jennifer Wherry, Staff Attorney (ext. 304)

* This placement involves sensitive subject matters. Volunteer sensitivity training is available through the placement upon request.


Social Security Administration

Organization Description:

Our Staff Attorneys and Administrative Law Judges work nationwide to provide the public with a timely and judicious appeal for Social Security benefits, primarily related to the adjudication of applications for disability benefits. Controlling regulations may be found at 20 CFR, Parts 400-499, in the Code of Federal Regulations, and in Title 42, U.S. Code, the Public Welfare.

Externship Description:

Description of Activities for Students: There are two Hearing Offices in the Houston area—Houston Downtown and Houston Bissonnet. (For interest in the Bissonnet Hearing Office, please contact Cathy Anderson, Supervisory Attorney-Advisor at 713-349-7300.) It is SSA’s policy to provide educationally related work assignments, on an equal opportunity basis, for students. Normally, the work assignments do not exceed one semester. However, assignments may be longer when academically justifiable.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Law Student Volunteersand Summer Public Interest Fellow

Minimum hours: 15-20 hours per week

Will Accept: 2L, 3L, LLM

Provide: Resume, Writing Sample, Application

Interview: Yes

Other Requirements: Security/Background Check

Contact Information:

Name: Cheryl Love Hanks, Supervisory Attorney-Advisor

Address: Leland Federal Building, 1919 Smith Street, Suite 500, Houston, TX 77002

Phone: 713-654-1090, ext. 242

Fax: 713-209-3262

Email: cheryl.hanks@ssa.go

Website: www.socialsecurity.gov then select Information about Social Security’s Hearings and Appeals Process, Attorneys and Representatives, or Representing Claimants

Return to top


Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts (TALA)

Organization Information:  Texas Accountants and Lawyers is a nonprofit for the Arts which provides legal and accounting services to artists of all types.

Externship Information:  Activities for students may include assisting in estate planning for artists, mediation and matching up lawyers and artists. Also, students are encouraged to write law related articles for the "TALA Reporter."
Student interns are taken year-round.

Please send your resume to www.talarts.org, or call 800-526-8252.

Note:  After 30 years in Houston, TALA has moved its operations and board to Austin to maximize statewide resources for Austin area artists and to update operations. 

Return to top


Texas Attorney General’s Office, Antitrust Division*

Organizational Information There are eleven civil litigation divisions in the Office of the Texas Attorney General. These divisions perform a wide variety of functions ranging from prosecuting antitrust violations to providing representation to other state agencies.

The Antitrust Division promotes competition by enforcing state and federal antitrust laws through investigations and lawsuits. The division investigates allegations of monopolization, bid-rigging, price-fixing and customer allocation. The division also reviews proposed mergers to insure they will not result in an unacceptable increase in market power for any single entity. Finally, the division reviews complaints under the Texas whistle-blower protection statute.

Externship Information:

Details of this externship can be obtained from Prof. Darren Bush.

Positions Considered: Summer Academic Extern

Minimum Hours: Full time during the summer. May work for half the summer or the entire summer.

Will Accept: 2L, 3L. Prefer students who have taken Antitrust course, but not a requirement.

Number of students needed: Varies

Provide: Resume

Interview: Yes

*Contact Information: Interested students should apply by providing a resume to Prof. Darren Bush at dbush@central.uh.edu. Prof. Bush will review your resume and contact you.

Return to top


Texas Commission for Environmental Quality (TCEQ)

Organization Information:

The Litigation Division of the TCEQ provides legal representation and support to the Executive Director of the agency through the Office of Compliance and Enforcement and the Financial Administration Division. Division attorneys negotiate agreed administrative orders; litigate enforcement actions; draft and interpret legislation, rules, and regulations related to enforcement; and coordinate the Supplemental Environmental Projects and Environmental Audits programs with the enforcement process. The Division also works with the Office of the Attorney General to prosecute civil environmental cases in state and federal court. The Special Investigations Section of the Litigation Division investigates environmental crimes and assists with prosecution in the state and federal court.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Interns in the Litigation Division are exposed to a wide variety of projects and research assignments relating to active enforcement cases in the administrative context. Interns will conduct legal research; prepare written memoranda; draft petitions, orders, and discovery; attend settlement conferences; and assist with all trial duties as necessary. The Litigation Division also has a number of extra-curricular activities during the summer for attorneys, law clerks, and support staff that interns may choose to participate in.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Law Student Volunteersand Summer Public Interest Fellow

Minimum hours:12 hours per week

Will accept:1L, 2L, 3L and FLLM

Provide:Resume, Transcript and Application

Other Requirements: The TCEQ Litigation Division is specifically looking for students with a demonstrated interest in environmental law, either in their course work or their activities. We also prefer students who have law journal, litigation, administrative law, judicial, or legislative experience.

Contact Information:

Name: Laurencia Fasoyiro

Address: 5425 Polk Avenue, Suite H, Houston, Texas 77023-1486

Telephone:713-422-8914

Email: lfasoyir@tceq.state.tx.us

Return to top

U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Texas

Organization Information:

The United States Attorney for the Southern District of Texas is the chief federal law enforcement officer in this area. The U.S. Attorney's Office criminally and civilly prosecutes individuals and corporate entities for violations of federal law. The office also civilly represents federal agencies that have been sued.

The Southern District of Texas shares a long border with Mexico, and has one of the most active and diverse criminal and civil dockets of the 94 federal judicial districts. The United States Attorney’s Office has staffed offices in Houston, Brownsville, Corpus Christi, Laredo, McAllen, and Victoria, as well as an un-staffed office in Galveston.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: The law student clerkship program provides participants with supervised, direct responsibility for post-conviction and post-appeal litigation. Participants will be assigned to the Appellate or Civil Divisions, with responsibility to research and draft briefs in post-judgment and post-appeal litigation. The program will include briefings in all aspects of federal criminal and civil litigation, as well as opportunities to attend hearings, trials, and other proceedings.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern and Summer Academic Extern

Will accept: 2L, 3L and LLM

Number of students needed: 10- Houston and 2 each in Brownsville, Corpus Christi, Laredo and McAllen

Minimum Hours: 240

Provide: Resume, Cover Letter, Transcripts and Writing Sample

Interview: Yes

Other Requirements: Must be a United States Citizen. A background investigation is required.

Contact Information:

Name: Mitch Neurock, Executive AUSA, Professional Development

Address: P.O. Box 61129, Houston, TX 77208-1129

Phone: 713-567-9376

Fax: 713-718-3415

Email: mitchel.neurock@usdoj.gov

Website: www.usdoj.gov/usao/txs

Return to top


U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services

Organization Information:
See http://www.uscis.gov


Externship Information:
Description of Activities for Students: The main functions of the USCIS Legal Department are: (1) to provide legal advice and analysis to the Adjudications Officers concerning a wide variety of issues that are raised during the adjudication of applications for citizenship, lawful permanent resident status, and various types of waivers and employment authorization, including criminal convictions, state laws concerning marriage, divorce, and adoption, interpretation of the Immigration and Nationality Act and the implementing regulations at Title 8, Code of Federal Regulations; (2) to provide litigation advice and support to the U.S. Attorney's Office in federal district court litigation that arises throughout the adjudication of benefits applications; (3) to provide appellate work to the Administrative Appeals Office and to the Board of Immigration Appeals related to the adjudication of benefits applications; (4) to provide legal guidance concerning policy decisions made by USCIS management; (5) to provide litigation support in EEO claims brought against the government. Any student volunteers would assist USCIS Legal in the completion of any or all of these functions. Any student volunteers must be fingerprinted and cleared for work within a security building. The work would be performed both at the USCIS main district office as well as at our Section 245 Adjudications building. The building are about four miles apart.


Contact Information:
Name: Pauline A. Appelbaum, USCIS Associate Area Counsel
Phone: 281-774-4651 cell: 281-788-6226 (preferable)
Email: Pauline.Appelbaum@dhs.gov

Return to top


U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)

Organization Information:

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is the federal agency responsible for programs related to the housing and community needs of America. HUD programs include FHA mortgage insurance, rental subsidies, neighborhood rehabilitation, community development, Fair Housing enforcement, and many others. The Houston HUD Office is a Multifamily Program Center and provides support and services for many HUD programs.

Externship Information:

Description of Activities for Students: Students assigned to the Houston HUD Office of Counsel will work primarily with multifamily housing transactions. They must become familiar with statutory and regulatory requirements, perform research, prepare written and electronic materials as well as daily logs of work activities. Functions will include review of closing or sale documents, i.e., commitments, deeds, deeds of trust, notes, regulatory agreements, surveys, UCCs, title commitments and policies, etc., to prepare for specific transactions. Students will also attend closings or meetings with clients and/or staff. Various other duties may be assigned as needed.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, Law Student Volunteersand Summer Public Interest Fellow

Minimum hours: 180 per semester

Will accept: 2L, 3L, LLM and FLLM

Provide:Resume, Transcript and Writing Sample

Contact Information:

Name:Gloria Aldridge

Address:1301 Fannin, Suite 2200, Houston, TX 77002

Telephone: 713-718-3126

Email: Gloria_m._aldridge@hud.gov

Other Comments:Please see the Department’s website at www.hud.gov for general information. Please also see www.hud.gov/offices/ogc for HUD’s Legal Honors Intern Program.

Return to top


YMCA International Services, Immigration Legal Services Department

Organization Information:
As a unique branch of the YMCA, the YMCA International Services was established in 1978 in response to a large influx of refugees from Southeast Asia. The mission statement of the YMCA is “To put Judeo-Christian principles into practice through programs that build healthy spirit, mind and body for all.” YMCA International Services was created to address the immediate resettlement needs of those individuals and families fleeing political persecution regardless of their nations of origin. The International Services branch has evolved into a multi-service agency that provides holistic services to Houston’s refugee and immigrant communities, with a special focus on facilitating and fostering self-sufficiency in our clients. Services offered by the Branch include:

•Refugee Resettlement
•Assistance for Victims of Human Trafficking
•Employment Services
•Cultural Orientation
•GED Preparation and Educational Counseling

Additionally, the International Services Branch is a Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) accredited agency offering the following legal immigration services:

•Citizenship and Adjustment of Status
•Family Based Petitions
•Pro Bono Asylum representation
•Violence Against Women Act Petitions (VAWA)
•Crime Victims Civil Legal Services (CVCLS)
•Employment Authorization

Externship Information:
This position requires working with clients seeking benefits under all aspects of family-based immigration; assisting attorney with representation in removal hearings, including providing consultation on remedies available before the EOIR, the BIA, and the federal courts if necessary. The intern will also work with the following pro bono programs: Houston Refugee Pro Bono Project, Crime Victims Civil Legal Services, VAWA Pro Bono Program and Services for Trafficking Victims Program. Intern may assist with the organizing of CLE training seminars for attorneys held by YMCA International Services.
Intern will assist attorney with research and writing of briefs, motions and memos. Other duties include helping attorney to offer In-House Training to staff regarding new immigration laws, issues, and procedures.
Other Requirements: Applicant will also be required to submit the YMCA volunteer application and pass our required security background check.

Contact Information
Name: Andre Rodriguez
Address:6300 Westpark, Ste. 600 Houston, TX 77057
Telephone:713-339-9015x343
Email: andrer@ymcahouston.org

Return to top

 


The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

Comprising two gallery buildings, two house museums, a sculpture garden, visitor’s center, two libraries, an archive, a movie theater / lecture auditorium, gift shop, café, and an art school, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston is a dynamic nonprofit that faces a variety of legal and administrative challenges.  Students participating in the Museum’s Externship Program get real-world legal experience working under the Museum’s Policy and Compliance Administrator and in-house counsel, Carlotta Ramirez. 

During the externship, students have the opportunity to work on a wide variety of legal projects as they arise; past projects include everything from researching the legal implications of art acquisitions or loans, investigating import/export law, drafting contracts, analyzing copyright issues and reproduction licenses, and creating and drafting Museum policies and procedures.  Because of the wide scope of work the Museum has to offer, each externship is tailored to the academic interests of the visiting student. 

Because it is run and managed as a “law firm laboratory,” the Museum’s Externship Program prepares students for the realities of legal practice and is intended to provide practical experience that the student can utilize in a future legal job.  Through weekly staff meetings, interns both practice and teach high-level business communication skills.  Additionally, a system of deadlines and project goals allows each student to practice producing substantive work product professionally.  As many projects require attention at any given time, students must also develop the ability to prioritize and manage their time efficiently.  Ultimately, the Museum’s Externship Program is designed to provide students insight into the rigors of a law firm practice or in-house counsel position in a nonprofit environment that yields interesting and unusual issues to explore.

Positions Considered: Fall Academic Extern, Spring Academic Extern, Summer Academic Extern, and Summer Public Interest Fellow

Return to top


CHILDREN AT RISK is a nonprofit organization that drives change for children through research, education and influencing public policy.  We are the only nonprofit organization that is focused solely on the well-being of the whole child, that tracks those indicators through its publication Growing Up in Houston, and that proactively drives change for children by educating legislators on the importance of improving each of the key indicators.  Through our research and advocacy programs, CHILDREN AT RISK is a well-known leader in understanding the health, safety and economic indicators impacting children, and educating public policy makers of their importance in improving the lives of children.

CHILDREN AT RISK serves as a catalyst for change to improve the quality of life for children through strategic research, public policy analysis, education, collaboration and advocacy. Our vision and focus is to make children’s needs a priority and to ensure ample resources are available for children and their families to thrive.

Return to top


KIND was founded by Angelina Jolie and the Microsoft Corporation to create a pro bono movement of law firms, corporations, nongovernmental organizations, universities, and volunteers to provide quality and compassionate legal counsel to unaccompanied refugee and immigrant children in the United States.

KIND serves as the leading organization for the protection of unaccompanied children who enter the US immigration system alone and strives to ensure that no such child appears in immigration court without representation. We achieve fundamental fairness through high-quality legal representation and by advancing the child's best interests, safety, and well-being.

Return to top


The Tahirih Justice Center is an innovative, efficient, and strategic nonprofit organization that works to protect immigrant women and girls from gender-based violence through legal services, advocacy, and public education programs.

Return to top


The mission of the Galveston Bay Foundation is to preserve, protect and enhance the natural resources of the Galveston Bay estuarine system and its tributaries for present users and for posterity. To accomplish this mission the Foundation has targeted four goals:

Advocacy -- Encourage and actively seek solutions to conflicts among the diverse users of the Bay. Wise, prudent and careful utilization of administrative and legal proceedings when required and approved by a 2/3 majority of the Executive Board present and voting.

Conservation -- Develop projects aimed at preserving/enhancing the natural resources of the Bay system.

Education -- Provide resources and guidance for education projects aimed at developing a constituency for the Bay, from schoolchildren to public officials.

Research -- Support the allocation of public and private resources for research into the multiple resources of the Bay system and ultimately establish a research endowment.

Return to top


Bayou Land Conservancy is a community-sponsored land preservation organization working with willing landowners to permanently protect land in the greater Houston region. We preserve river and bayou corridors, other properties with significant wildlife habitat value and places where family recreation can occur in harmony with nature. Our "No Child Left Inside" education program connects tomorrow's conservation leaders with nature today. Bayou Land Conservancy is proud to have conserved over 9,000 acres in the greater Houston region.

Return to top