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General Information


Second- and third-year law students and master's degree candidates are eligible to participate in an externship. Registration is contingent upon an overall GPA of 2.3 and approval from Professor Hamilton, Director of Externships. Externship placements are available across government, criminal law, entertainment, public interest, and judicial sectors, as well as in dispute resolution.


Prospective externs must secure their own placements. Current openings are available through Simplicity or the Career Development Office. New placements are eligible for approval if they meet the clinical program's educational objectives and afford adequate field supervision. Private law firms will be approved if they are either (1) nonprofit public interest entities (cf. section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code), regardless of whether the student is paid or unpaid, or (2) a for-profit entity where the student is paid.


Each unit of externship credit requires 52.5 hours of completed field work. Hours spent in on-site work or with lawyers in the field placement count toward externship credit, while travel time, breaks, and most off-site work do not count toward externship credit. Students can earn up to 22 units of out-of-classroom credit toward graduation; these units include credit earned for externships, journals, and advocacy teams. Following the add/drop deadline, changes cannot be made to the number of registered units. Students are expected to register for the number of units that properly reflects the number of hours to be worked. If extenuating circumstances arise, students should contact Professor Hamilton as soon as possible to request an exception.


Workshops are mandatory for all first-time externs. Students who cannot attend a workshop due to scheduling conflicts must meet with a faculty advisor as approved by the Director of Externships. Returning externs do not need to register for a workshop, but are expected to participate in a mid-semester and final meeting with either Professor Hamilton or a faculty advisor.

Faculty advisors are required for first-time externs who cannot attend a workshop. Externs must meet with their approved faculty advisor on a biweekly basis as well as provide their faculty advisors with copies of externship journals. At the faculty advisor's discretion, additional readings or research may be required to supplement the externship. All faculty advisors must be approved by Professor Hamilton.

Timesheets are due on the second and fourth Friday of every month and must be submitted on TWEN. Students must use the provided form to record time, and submitted timesheets must be signed by the respective externship supervisor. Students are expected to retain copies of all submitted time records.

Evaluations are required from both the field supervisor and the extern. Field supervisors are asked to complete midterm and final evaluations. The midterm evaluation is intended to follow a discussion between the extern and supervisor about the externship direction and progress, and the final evaluation is completed by the supervisor alone. At the completion of the externship, externs are required to submit a confidential student evaluation regarding the field assignment.

Journals must be submitted to the Clinical Programs office by the due dates provided in the syllabus. More details about journal requirements and designated topics can be found in the externship syllabus.


Professor Hamilton must approve externships prior to registration. Prospective externs should contact Professor Hamilton to obtain approval. Following approval, a completed registration packet should be submitted to clinicallaw@pepperdine.edu. Students can register for 1 to 10 units and are expected to work with their field supervisors and the Clinical Education Program to determine the appropriate number of units.

Further information

For more information about Externships, please contact Professor Hamilton at sophia.hamilton@pepperdine.edu or 310.506.4758 or the Clinical Program Manager in the Clinical Programs Office at 310.506.7449, or by e-mail at clinicallaw@pepperdine.edu.