Elon Law students excel in summer employment
From the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law in Rome to the North Carolina Supreme Court, Elon Law students are gaining hands-on experience in a variety of opportunities that develop their knowledge of the legal profession.
Elon University School of Law students are living and working in 12 states and five countries over the summer months as they broaden their legal knowledge with employment opportunities that promote practical training in the law.
In addition to legal positions in the United States, Elon Law students have secured summer positions in Italy, China, the Philippines and the United Kingdom. Nearly three dozen Elon Law students are also receiving academic credits
related to their employment.
“My role at the North Carolina Supreme Court has given me a great perspective as to the vast number of issues that can arise within the law,” said Anthony Rascati L’17, who just finished his first year at Elon Law before spending the summer clerking with Chief Justice Mark Martin of the North Carolina Supreme Court. “Additionally, working in the Supreme Court has given me a new appreciation for the teamwork that exists within the court system. Everyone has a specific function that they perform, and seeing the Court work in a fluent manner further cements the notion that the ability to work as part of a team is one of the greatest attributes that someone in the legal profession can have.”
For students like Rascati now entering their second full year of law school, summer positions are serving as a precursor to legal residencies they will complete in the months ahead. Elon Law is the first and only U.S. law school to integrate in-depth “learning by doing” into its curriculum through required residencies.
In their residency, second-year law students work 32 hours a week over a 10-week trimester. Students work with their judge or attorney supervisor and a faculty member to create a learning plan for their residency.
A partial list of summer employers includes positions in government, private law firms, corporate counsel and nonprofits:
- International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT)
- U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs
- United States Environmental Protection Agency
- United States Attorney’s Office, Middle District of North Carolina
- North Carolina Supreme Court
- North Carolina Business Court
- Legal Aid of North Carolina
- Smith Debnam Narron Drake Saintsing & Myers, LLP
- Connors Morgan, PLLC
- Morgan Stanley Smith Barney
- The Fresh Market
- Ernst & Young
- American Lung Association
- The Atlantic Coast Conference
- Republic of the Philippines, Securities and Exchange Commission
- Wanhua Chemical Group (China)
- Berry Appleman & Leiden (United Kingdom)
Forty-three students are working in an office that already employs an Elon Law alum. That vibrant Elon Law alumni network is connecting students to summer opportunities in ways that will assist with their career placements after passing the bar exam.
Elon Law administrators said the value of summer employment – whether paid or unpaid, or for academic credit – can not be overstated.
“For a law student, hands-on experience in a legal setting is crucial to being prepared to enter the profession upon graduation,” said Melissa Duncan ’06 L’09, director of the Office of Career and Student Development. “Through their summer internships, our students are able to apply the rules and theories they are learning in the classroom, and have an opportunity to learn more about management of a firm or business.”
Hear what some students learned about the law because of their summer positions.
“Some people cringe at the thought of others defending criminals. I have learned that criminal defense attorneys serve a valuable purpose in the criminal justice system. Good defense attorneys force others, such as police and prosecutors, to do their job correctly and ethically. I have grown to really respect the work a defense attorney does.” – Michael Justice L’17
“On the first day at the North Carolina Department of Justice, I was given the task of organizing boxes of evidence with one of the defendants in the case. For hours, we sorted through documents that would help advocate her interests in the case. Being able to actually see a person that is connected to the case gave me a deeper appreciation of the law and the clients I will represent. I realized that an attorney and his or her client embark on a journey together to advocate their case.” – Anthony Campbell L’17
“My time at the Business Court has helped me to see the advantages of maintaining an objective viewpoint. Even when an attorney is advocating for their client, it is important to have a view of the facts and law objectively in order to appreciate the position from which the judge will make rulings in the case.” – Jackson Barnes L’17
Visit the Office of Career & Student Development for more information on summer and full-time career opportunities.