Pro Bono Scholars Program
In 2014 the New York State Bar announced a new program for 3Ls called the Pro Bono Scholars Program (the NYS Unified Court System announcement can be found at this link). The program allows second semester 3Ls to take the New York bar examination in February of their final year of study, before they graduate, and be admitted to the bar in the summer following their graduation. In lieu of regular classes, the Pro Bono Scholars participate in an intensive experiential learning program that provides pro bono service to low-income New Yorkers from February through May. Scholars will be able to participate in graduation ceremonies but will receive their diplomas in June.
Columbia Law School is proud to participate in Pro Bono Scholars Program by offering The Externship on Lawyering for Social Justice in Spring 2018. Students enrolled in this course will spend most of their time (at least 40 hours per week) doing associate-level legal work at an organization that is a member of the Leap Legal Advocacy Partnership (leap-ny.org). Students also will participate in a three-hour weekly seminar in the evening, which will provide an opportunity to frame the issues to be explored in the field, discuss their experiences and the assigned readings, and meet with leading practitioners.
For more details on the program including qualifications, deadlines, and how to apply for the Spring 2018 program, please see the Notice and Application. Applications are due on August 4, 2017, with decisions rendered by September 18, 2017.
Please email Ellen Chapnick with questions.