Clinical Course Eligibility Requirements
The minimum cumulative GPA to enroll in a clinical course is 2.60. If your GPA is between 2.33 (probation level) and 2.60, you may seek a waiver of the GPA requirement by including within the short essay referenced in the application form an explanation of why you believe a GPA waiver is appropriate. Such applications will be reviewed by the clinical faculty and then, in appropriate circumstances, will be passed along to the Associate Dean for approval. Applications with a GPA waiver request will be considered at the same time as applications without such a request.
Clinical positions are open to all students who have completed Evidence, Persuasion & Advocacy, and Professional Responsibility before the semester in which they wish to enroll in a clinical course. If you will not have completed all these courses prior to the semester in which you seek to enroll in a clinic, please contact Lori Borgen, Director of the CSJ, at [email protected] to discuss your options, such as taking one of the courses as a co-requisite.
The Impact Litigation Clinic is a full-year, 5-credit course allocated at 2 credits in the fall and 3 credits in the spring, with separate grades for the seminar and clinical component.
The Criminal Defense and Community Advocacy Clinic is a full-year, 8-credit course allocated at 5 credits in the fall and 3 credits in the spring, with separate grades for the seminar and the clinical component.
The Housing Justice and Legal Design Clinic is a full-year, 6-credit course allocated at 3 credits in the fall and 3 credits in the spring, with separate grades for the seminar and clinical component.
Most other clinics have a 1 credit seminar and a 4 credit clinical component that are graded separately.
Most clinics require an average of approximately 15 hours of work per week, and some weeks may require considerably more time (and some less). During the semester, each student enrolled in a 5-credit clinic must complete 195 hours of case work.
Taking a course in the clinics is an extremely valuable opportunity to learn how to be a lawyer, to gain practical experience under careful supervision, and to make your résumé attractive to employers who know that clinic graduates are well-prepared to function as attorneys. You should be aware, however, that working in a clinic requires a significant time commitment, one that may well be greater than what is required for other courses awarding comparable credits. Please think through whether you are able to make this commitment before you apply for (and certainly, before you accept) a clinical position. It is generally not wise to do an AWR and a clinic in the same semester. If you will be doing a mock trial or moot court competition during the same semester that you are enrolled in a clinic, you should speak with your clinic professor about how to structure your workload to participate in both courses. If you have any concerns about your ability to devote enough time to the clinic, please speak with the professor who directs the clinic prior to accepting a position.
Some clinics might require you to do an interview in addition to submitting the online application. If an interview is required, you will be contacted to schedule it.
Prior to the start of the law school's registration period for the fall semester, you will be notified by email if you are receiving an offer to enroll in a clinic. Please note that clinics may make offers at different times, so if one clinic has made an offer to one student, that does not mean that all offers have been made by other clinics, or even by that clinic.
Please note that students who are enrolled in a Seton Hall Law School clinic cannot simultaneously intern with a judge as it may create a conflict of interest, and may overburden the student with responsibilities that could interfere with working in the clinic and in the externship, both of which require significant student hours. If a student seeks to intern with a judge during the semester in which the student is doing a clinic, and the student has a reasonable belief that the position will not create a conflict (e.g., because the internship would be in a different court system than any in which the clinic practices), and that the student will be able to devote the time necessary to do an excellent job for both the clinic and the externship, the student should speak to the clinical professor about the situation, and if the professor and the Director of the Center for Social Justice agree, the Center for Social Justice can request a waiver from the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.