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Elon partners with The Washington Center to offer DC externships to law students at other schools

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Elon University School of Law has partnered with The Washington Center to provide its students, and in the future those from other schools, with full semester or summer legal externships in Washington, D.C.

Located in Greensboro, N.C., Elon was founded in 2006 with the goal of preparing students to be leaders at regional, national and global levels. It plans to place students in executive and legislative branches of the federal government, as well as in non-governmental sectors in Washington, D.C.

Its current externship program offers opportunities for students to serve in dozens of state executive, legislative and judicial branch offices, as well as in a number of nonprofit organizations in North Carolina.

The new program will also be made available to students at other ABA-approved law schools that join a consortium. Students, second- and third-year law students in good academic standing, will receive academic credit from their home law school.

The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars is an independent, nonprofit organization that serves hundreds of colleges and universities. It has more than 50,000 alumni since it was founded in 1975.

“Organizing a consortium of universities to participate in a legal externship program is a milestone for The Washington Center,” said Mike Smith, President of The Washington Center. “We’ve partnered with Elon University for 24 years and now, together, we are embarking on a new initiative that will give law students across the country access to externships in the nation’s capital.”

Participating students will work approximately 36 hours per week at their placement beginning in the summer 2012 term. Students will also take a legal externship seminar and one or two law classes taught by adjunct faculty members of Elon Law. The program will offer students between 12 and 15 academic credits toward their law degree. The Washington Center will manage the operations of the program. Margaret Kantlehner, associate professor of law and director of externships, preceptors and capstone leadership experiences at Elon Law, will serve as faculty supervisor for the program.

“The program will provide a unique experiential educational opportunity for law students who are interested in law practice in government, federal agencies and non-governmental organizations,” Kantlehner said. “It will provide valuable work experience for Elon students and enable the School of Law to develop and strengthen relations with prospective employers of Elon Law graduates in the D.C. area.”