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Clinical Programs

Emory Law students have a wealth of opportunities to serve the local community while learning essential legal skills.

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Competitive Programs

Emory Law students dominate in regional and national tourneys for preparation and oral skills in public interest law.

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Nationally Ranked

Emory Law has been ranked by National Jurist as one of the best schools for public interest law.

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Public Interest at Emory Law

Emory Law prepares students for legal careers in public service. Our innovative curriculum includes traditional courses in public interest law as well as a range of topics from international human rights to homelessness. We offer experiences beyond the classroom through clinical programs, our extensive externship program, practice societies, and networking with faculty and alumni who work in the field.

"The pursuit of justice lies at the heart of the legal profession. Public interest law provides the opportunity to make justice a reality in people's everyday lives."

Robert Schapiro, Dean and Asa Griggs Candler Professor of Law

Public Service at Emory

Service and volunteering are core principals for Emory University, with opportunities available throughout the year. 

EPIC

The student-led Emory Public Interest Committee (EPIC) promotes public interest law, facilitates the employment of Emory students in public interest legal positions, and works to make legal services more accessible to those who do not have adequate representation. Learn more »

Beyond foundational coursework, students may select from an extensive array of courses and in-depth seminars and benefit from the scholarship of renowned academics and practitioners.

Courses

Students can explore the wide range of public interest issues through courses including the following:

  • Administrative Law
  • Constitutional Litigation
  • Child Advocacy
  • Criminal Justice
  • Education Law
  • Environmental Law
  • Feminist Legal Theory
  • Gender and Law
  • International Human Rights
  • Juvenile Law
  • Victimless Crimes

In-Depth Seminars

Emory Law hosts visiting scholars from around the world and sponsors workshops and colloquia on public interest issues such as the following:

  • Education Policy
  • Disability and Discrimination
  • Constitutional and International Law
  • Reproductive Issues
  • Politics and Democratic Governance
  • Housing and Homelessness

Academic Programs and Projects

Emory Law’s academic programs and projects focus attention on specific areas of the law. Students benefit from an interdisciplinary approach that brings together respected professors, leading scholars from around the world, and “learn by doing” experiential programs.

Your Career in Public Interest

Career Center Services & Job Fairs

Through the Center for Professional Development and Career Strategy, we offer one-on-one advising with a recognized expert in public service careers. Emory Law is part of the Georgia Law School Consortium, which presents the Public Sector Career Fair each spring. We also participate in the Equal Justice Works Career Fair and Conference, a national conference held annually in the fall.

Public Service Internships

Through the Emory Public Interest Committee (EPIC) and generous donors, we can offer summer funding for qualified students who wish to work in public service. In addition to numerous Atlanta organizations, students have worked recently with the following national offices: 

  • California Rural Legal Assistance, San Francisco
  • Cook County Public Defender, Chicago
  • Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, Washington, DC
  • Lawyers’ Committee for Better Housing, Chicago
  • Massachusetts Appleseed Center for Law and Justice, Boston
  • Miami Office of the Public Defender, Miami
  • National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty, Washington, DC
  • New York Civil Liberties Union, New York
  • Oklahoma Indian Legal Services, Oklahoma
  • Orleans Public Defenders, New Orleans
  • Rockland County District Attorney’s Office, New York
  • US Department of Justice, Antitrust Division, Washington, DC
  • US Department of State, Office of International Religious Freedom, Washington, DC
  • Vera Institute of Justice, New York

In addition, the Barton Center for Child Law and Policy Center offers the Emory Summer Child Advocacy Program which provides paid summer positions

Emory Law’s extensive externship program places up to 160 students with more than 90 organizations during the fall and spring semesters of their second and third years; a large number of these externships are offered with public interest and government employers. Our students assist public defenders, prosecutors, public interest organizations, and government agencies while earning academic credit. Placements include the following:

  • American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
  • Atlanta Legal Aid Society
  • Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  • Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
  • Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
  • Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
  • Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
  • Georgia Innocence Project
  • Georgia Legal Services
  • Georgia Lawyers for the Arts
  • Health Law Partnership
  • Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
  • Pro Bono Partnership of Atlanta
  • Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
  • Southern Environmental Law Center