Knight First Amendment Institute Externship
Carrie DeCell, Lecturer in Law (2 graded academic and 3 ungraded fieldwork credits)
The externship will center on the Knight Institute’s strategic litigation efforts to define and defend First Amendment freedoms in the digital age. Students will work in collaboration with, and under the close supervision of, experienced First Amendment lawyers. They will focus on the Knight Institute’s current litigation docket, including cases relating to public officials’ use of social media, the rights of digital journalists and researchers to investigate social media and other online platforms, government surveillance of individuals’ online speech, and restraints on speech by government employees and whistleblowers.
The weekly classroom component of the externship will consist of a one-hour litigation meeting and a one-hour seminar, both held at the Knight Institute’s offices in the Interchurch building, located at 475 Riverside Drive. During the weekly litigation meetings, students will engage with Knight Institute attorneys in analyzing the merits and strategic value of new cases under consideration. The weekly seminar class will provide a theoretical and doctrinal foundation for the students’ work at the Knight Institute. Students will be required to submit response papers relating to the readings for each class and be expected to participate thoughtfully and respectfully in class discussions.
The externship will afford students an opportunity to work closely with Knight Institute attorneys in developing cutting-edge First Amendment challenges. Students will draft substantive research memoranda to be assigned by Knight Institute attorneys. In addition, they will participate in team meetings; conduct spot legal research; review government records and policies; and/or draft blog posts or other public communications.
Students will be evaluated on the basis of two substantive research memoranda, or a series of memoranda collectively requiring roughly the same amount of research and writing, as well as short response papers submitted before each seminar class and attendance and participation in class discussion.
To apply, please complete the Common Application when it is released. Please watch for informational sessions. Any additional questions can be sent to Susan Kraham at [email protected].
Applicants may be contacted for an interview once all applications have been received.