Externships provide a unique opportunity for students to work in a professional setting outside the Law School while earning academic credits. The program requires students work at an approved placement during the semester and take a companion externship course. The course enhances the student experience by assisting in the development of essential practical skills, professional skills, values, and judgment. By emphasizing self-reflection, externships not only offer invaluable practical experience but ensure students have the capacity for self-directed professional growth beyond their law school years.

The Externship Program currently offers the following programs: the Public Service Externship, Holistic Defense ExternshipJudicial Externship, and Corporate Counsel Externship

For more information, view the Externship FAQs below or email Assistant Professor (Clinical) Daniel Ellman, director of externships, at lawexternships@wayne.edu.

Details regarding prerequisites, program requirements and application processes are outlined at the links below. 

Externship Course Offerings: Annual Schedule

Beginning in the Summer 2022 term, the Externship Program will offer its programs according to the following annual schedule:

Fall terms

Holistic Defense Externship
Corporate Counsel Externship

Winter terms

Public Service Externship
Judicial Externship

Summer terms

Public Service Externship
Judicial Externship
Corporate Counsel Externship

Upcoming Application Schedule

Below is the externship application schedule for Summer 2024 and Fall 2024:

Feb. 5, 2024 - Applications open for:

  • Judicial Externship (Summer 2024)
  • Public Service (Summer 2024)
  • Corporate Counsel (Summer 2024)
  • Holistic Defense (Fall 2024)

March 1, 2024 - Applications close for:

  • Corporate Counsel Externship (Summer 2024)
  • Holistic Defense Externship (Fall 2024)

April 26, 2024, or whenever course reaches capacity, whichever is sooner Applications close for:

  • Judicial Externship (Summer 2024)

May 10, 2024, or whenever course reaches capacity, whichever is sooner Applications close for:

  • Public Service (Summer 2024)

June 3, 2024 - Applications open for:

  • Corporate Counsel (Fall 2024)

June 20, 2024- Applications close for:

  • Corporate Counsel (Fall 2024)


  • Compensation - An extern may accept compensation for their fieldwork. This compensation may come directly from the field placement site or from an outside source, such as, but not limited to, a grant, stipend, or scholarship. Students may also receive reimbursement for reasonable out-of-pocket expenses related to their fieldwork, such as, but not limited to, transportation costs or parking at the field placement. Any compensation or reimbursement must be arranged by the extern and the field placement or outside source. See Wayne Law Externship Standards.
  • Field Placement Location - In the Fall and Winter terms, all field placements must be located within 180 miles driving distance of the Law School. If a field placement has multiple offices, the office where the extern will do most of their work must be within 180 miles driving distance of the Law School. In the Summer term, a field placement may be located outside 180 miles driving distance of the Law School (i.e., locally, nationally, or internationally).  Regardless of the term, all students must work at an approved placement site. If a student wishes to have a placement site added to the approved list, they should email Professor Daniel Ellman (lawexternships@wayne.edu) as soon as possible.  The final day to request the addition of a placement site for the Summer term is Feb. 29.  There is no guarantee that a placement site can be added. See Wayne Law Externship Standards.
  • Summer Colloquium Courses - During the Summer terms only, it is anticipated that the classroom component of the Colloquium for each externship course will be offered remotely.


For students: If you have questions, please contact Assistant Professor (Clinical) Daniel Ellman, Director of Externships (lawexternships@wayne.edu).

For donors: Please consider investing in the work of the clinics by making a gift. Visit giving.wayne.edu or contact Rob MacGregor, senior director of philanthropy, at (313) 577-4141 or rmacgregor@wayne.edu.

Externship FAQ

  • How do I view the list of externship placements?

    You can complete an externship from Wayne Law's lists of approved placements, which is available via Canvas. You have to log in with your access ID and password to view them. If you cannot access the lists, email lawcommunications@wayne.edu for assistance. 

    View approved placements

    Placements include prosecutors' and public defenders' offices, courts, corporate counsel offices and public interest organizations.

  • What are externships?

    Externships are an academic program that allows students to earn credit for work at an approved placement with a court, nonprofit organization, state or federal agency, or in-house counsel program. Students enroll in the colloquium which is a course that supplements a student's experience at the approved externship placement.  

  • Am I eligible to participate in an externship?

    If you are a J.D. student, you must have completed all required first-year courses, have a grade point average of at least 2.0, and have passed or be enrolled in Professional Responsibility to be eligible for an externship.

    If you are an LL.M. student, you must have a minimum 3.0 grade point average, have completed the equivalent of the first-year courses, and have passed or be enrolled in Professional Responsibility to be eligible for an externship. As an LL.M. student, your externship placement must be related to your concentration.

  • How many credits are externships?

    When you elect to take an externship for credit, you must complete the externship colloquium and either the practicum or perform at least 150 hours of work for an approved field supervisor during the same semester. The colloquium and the practicum are two credits each.

  • Is there a maximum number of externship credits I can count towards the completion of my degree?

    You can take no more than eight credit hours in the externship program. There is also a 14-credit maximum on clinics and externships combined. 

  • How do I apply for an externship?

    Please see the application process detailed here.