The Generalist Externship Seminar: A Unique Curricular Opportunity to Teach About the Legal Profession
This article explores the role that a generalist externship seminar can play in teaching law students about the legal profession - lawyers, the institutions in which they practice, and the markets for their services. After reviewing the evolution of the externship course and externship seminar in the legal curriculum, the article turns to a discussion of the absence of opportunities at most law schools for students to study and learn about the legal profession. It contends that the absence of serious attention to the profession in the curricula of most law schools does a disservice to law students, who need specific, reliable information about the diverse institutions of the profession in order to chart their future careers, and to society as a whole, which relies on the legal profession to make real our nation's commitment to equal justice under the law. The article argues that generalist externship seminars offer a unique opportunity for students to examine critically the legal profession and the diverse institutions of law practice. It presents an approach to a generalist externship seminar that adopts a deepened understanding of the institutions of the profession as a learning objective and offers suggestions for designing such a seminar to maximize student learning.