Corporate Counsel Externship

Students enrolled in the Corporate Counsel Externship are placed in the legal department of a business oriented organization on a part-time basis for one academic term. The program is comprised of seven credits in total. Five credits are allocated to the experiential component (Law 379) and two credits are allocated to the academic component (Law 380). The Externship is generously supported by Norton Rose Fulbright. 

The purpose of the Externship is to provide students with an opportunity to:

  • Learn directly from experienced corporate counsel in a supportive educational environment;
  • Apply theoretical concepts learned in the classroom to practical legal and business matters in a particular industry;
  • Gain solicitor’s practice based experience in a supervised environment; and
  • Develop a deeper understanding of professional ethics and professional responsibility in practice.

Application Information for Students

  • Application information for 2019/20 will be posted in January.
  • Allard School of Law J.D. students in second and third year are eligible to participate.
  • Prerequisite: Law 459: Business Organizations (Note: Law 459 cannot be taken concurrently with the Externship).
  • Students are matched with organizations after acceptance to the program.

For more information about Clinical & Externship Programs at the Faculty, please click here.

Academic Composition

The Externship is comprised of seven credits.

Law 379: Externship – Corporate Counsel Externship (5 credits)

A five-credit clinical component in which students spend sixteen hours per week (two working days) for twelve weeks working in the legal department of a participating organization. A set of learning markers must be successfully achieved by the student during the Externship.

Fall 2018 Term Placement: September 10, 2018 - November 30, 2018 (excluding Mid-Term Break).
Spring 2019 Term Placement: January 7, 2019 - April 5, 2019 (excluding Reading Week). 

Students will be evaluated on a pass/fail based on the following:

  • Evaluation by student's Principal; 
  • Research Project; and
  • Bi-Weekly Refelctive Journals.

Law 459: Business Organizations.

Law 380: Externship Reflection – Corporate Counsel Externship (2 credits)

A two-credit academic component designed to promote reflective practice, enhance experiential learning gained through Law 379, and ensure a significant academic component to students' learning. The course content will focus on specific topics relevant to in-house practice

Students will be graded based on the following:

  • Written assignments;
  • Seminar participation (note: attendance at weekend seminars is mandatory); and
  • Final presentation.

Fall 2018 Term seminar dates:

  • September 8
  • September 9
  • November 24

Spring 2019 Term seminar dates:

  • January 5
  • January 6
  • March 30

Note: all seminar dates fall on a weekend.

Law 459: Business Organizations.

Learning Outcomes

Those who practice as in-house counsel know that their practice is unlike that of lawyers at a typical law firm.  In-house counsel are more than just a legal advisor to their organization.  While the exact role of in-house counsel varies depending on the individual relationships formed between counsel and the senior management team of their organization, generally speaking, in-house counsel are trusted advisors in areas that usually extend beyond strictly legal matters. They affect the full range of their organization’s decisions. 

A key objective of the Externship is to give the student exposure to the variety, depth, and complexity of in-house counsel practice, and allow the student to become aware of the types of legal and business issues that normally confront an in-house practitioner.