Clinics and Field Placement

Live practice

In live practice courses, students work in law offices, judicial chambers or on project teams where the practice of law is live and the consequences impact real people, institutions and our communities. The students’ work and the work of the office are not theoretical, hypothetical or simulated.

At UMKC we have three different types of live practice courses — clinics, field placements and collaborative projects.

You must take at least six credits in experiential coursework to graduate. Fortunately, we offer many experiential courses so it’s easy for you to meet and even exceed that requirement during your time here.

Clinics

Under the supervision of UMKC Law faculty, students represent actual clients with pressing legal needs.

Experiential Learning Courses

  • Advanced Legal Writing – Business Contract Drafting
  • Advanced Legal Writing – Litigation Drafting
  • Appellate Advocacy
  • Business Planning
  • Entrepreneurship & New Venture Creation
  • Client Counseling Team
  • Client Counseling Team
  • Client Counseling Team
  • Client Counseling Team
  • Client Counseling Team

Field placement

Under the supervision of mentor attorneys and judges, students work in approved government agencies, public interest organizations and judicial chambers. See a list of potential Field Placements hosts here.

Every field placement is matched with a seminar titled Learning from Practice. The seminars are taught by leading lawyers and delve into the nature of practice, professional identity formation and the skills necessary to succeed as a lawyer.

Students interested in a field placement internship should contact Professor Dierks to set up a meeting.

Field placement areas

 There are more than 100 approved field placement host offices and mentor attorneys. 

Sample Field Placements in Criminal Law include:

  • Jackson County Prosecutor’s Office
  • Wyandotte County District Attorney
  • Johnson County, KS District Attorney’s Office
  • Platte County Prosecutor's Office
  • Missouri Attorney General's Office
  • S. Attorney’s Office – Kansas and Missouri
  • Missouri State Public Defender
  • Kansas Board of Indigent Defenses

Sample Field Placements in Government Include:

Local

  • Office of the Mayor – Kansas City, MO
  • Office of the City Attorney-Kansas City, MO
  • City of Lenexa, KS
  • City of Olathe, KS

Federal

  • US. Department of Labor
  • US. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD)
  • US. Commodity Futures Trading Commission – Division of Enforcement
  • US. Environmental Protection Agency – Region VII
  • US. Department of Homeland Security – Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)
  • US. Department of Education – Office of Civil Rights
  • Judge Advocate General Corps (JAG) – Army, Navy, Air Force
  • Marines

Sample Field Placements in Public Interest Include:

  • Legal Aid of Western Missouri
  • Legal Aid of Easter Missouri
  • Legal Aid of Kansas
  • Heartland Center for Jobs & Freedom
  • University Health

Sample Field Placements in Sports include:
  • Sporting Kansas City
  • National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA)
  • UMKC Athletics – NCAA Compliance

Sample Field Placements in the Courts Include:

  • S. District Court - Western District of Missouri
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court – Western District of Missouri
  • 16th Circuit Court of Jackson County Missouri (Kansas City & Independence locations)
  • Jackson County Family Court

Sample Field Placements in Estate Planning include:
  • Country Club Trust Company
  • Dysart Taylor Cotter McMonigle & Montemore, PC
  • Heritage Law
  • Midwest Trust Company
  • Seigfreid Bingham, PC

All host offices must be faculty-approved, but we will help you to identify suitable placements that match your career interests, whether locally in the Kansas City metro area or in a distant city.

Nearly all emphasis areas require some experiential coursework, and field placement internships are the most common choice for students. More than half the internships are litigation focused, so they are great opportunities to bring your studies into action. We have environmental internships in government (EPA) and public interest groups (e.g., Heartland Conservation Alliance). Students interested in the International Law emphasis often take one of the immigration law placements, and those interested in Intellectual Property find themselves at an internship in the tech transfer office at KU Med.

Collaborative projects

Learn more about collaborative projects on the Experiential Learning page

Being immersed in our talented and supportive legal community kept me energized and excited throughout my law school career. Now that I'm graduating, those skills and connections are even more invaluable.

Fluffy Kilburn, '20

(pictured far right)