Section Description Provided by Instructor
2 credits (3 credits by request for additional participation; the additional credit will need to be registered as supervised research)
Enrollment: 3-6 LLM and/or Columbia University full-time graduate degree candidates.
The Columbia Law School Adolescent Representation Clinic represents youth and young adults on collateral issues relating to their aging out of foster care or other institutional settings. Most of these clients range in age from 16 to 23. The issues involved extend across a broad spectrum of need and may include housing and homelessness prevention; teen pregnancy and parenting; health and health benefits; income and support benefits; education, tuition and financial aid benefits; financial planning; civil rights including LGBTQ issues; job training and career planning; identify theft and credit; and inheritance.
One component of the clinic is a weekly seminar focusing on the unique attributes of adolescents and young adults as viewed from multiple disciplines including medicine, law, sociology, and psychology. Graduate students from other professional graduate schools in the university and LLM students can enroll in the seminar in order to explore adolescence from multiple perspectives.
Guest lecturers include advocates, family court judges, youth in foster care, and mental health professionals. Students in the Schools of Social Work, Public Health, International and Public Affairs, Journalism and Teachers College are encouraged to apply. There will be several spaces available in the seminar for students in these graduate programs and LLM students.
The seminar will meet weekly on Thursday 3:10-5pm. Credit for the seminar will be based on class participation and written work. Students will be encouraged to develop written work that emphasizes the contribution of their own discipline in addressing important issues concerning adolescents and young adults, particularly youth of color, youth living in poverty, and/or youth living in institutional settings. It is hoped that these papers or other written projects will enhance the ability of the clinic to represent its clients. Students enrolled in the seminar may have an opportunity to participate in clinic policy projects by permission for additional credit. At least two classes, one in September and one in October, will extend until at least 6pm. The exact dates have not yet been set; the one in October includes travel. Students enrolled in the seminar will also be required to observe family court proceedings at some point in September. More about this will be emailed to students during the summer.