Due to the unique dual function of the Undergraduate Legal Aid Office, students are employed in two capacities. Student interns spend one semester assisting with intakes for students seeking legal help. Interns can then apply to work as paid Student Advocates, who assist students facing University Charges.
Many interns and Student Advocates are interested in pursuing a legal career. In recent years, students have gone on to attend law school at elite institutions such as Harvard, Duke, University of Virginia and Georgetown.
Internship applications for Spring 2020 are now closed! Applications for Fall 2021 will open next semester.
The Undergraduate Legal Aid Office internship program allows students to gain valuable hands-on experience while earning 3 hours of academic credit. The office selects 8 students per semester. Interns work approximately 6 hours per week and attend an academic session every week.
During office hours, interns perform in-take interviews with students, maintain all administrative records and correspondence, and consult with the attorney. Classroom assignments complement the office learning experience.
To apply, students must have at least 56 credits by the start of the internship and a 3.0 cumulative GPA is recommended.
At the end of the semester, interns are afforded the opportunity to apply to the Student Advocate Program. Both the internship and Student Advocate Program provide an excellent opportunity for students considering a law-related career, or any student who hopes to develop writing and interpersonal skills while helping their peers.
Student Advocate Program
Student Advocates are undergraduate students attending the University of Maryland, College Park. They assist fellow students who are facing university charges relating to the Code of Academic Integrity, the Code of Student Conduct and Resident Life Rights and Responsibilities. Those selected receive extensive training on university procedures and on how to advocate on behalf of student-clients.
Student Advocates assist clients in preparing for a hearing or conference, act as an advocate during the proceedings and can assist with any necessary appeals. Student Advocates can advise students before a Preliminary Interview, but they do not provide representation at the interview.
Student Advocates maintain regular office hours during the semester, totaling about 7 hours per week. They also attend a weekly office meeting and represent students at hearings, which usually take place on weekday evenings.
Eligibility and Benefits
All undergraduate students are eligible to apply if they have 65 credits overall, 24 coming from UMCP and have at least two semesters remaining before graduation.
Student Advocates are paid employees of the office.