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.

Clinic courses

  • Child and Family Services
  • Entrepreneurial Law and Practice
  • Intellectual Property
  • Tax
  • Abandoned Housing
  • Wrongful Conviction
  • Death Penalty
  • Sentencing Mitigation

Field placement

Under the supervision of mentor attorneys and judges, students work in approved government agencies, public interest organizations and judicial chambers. 

Every field placement is matched with a seminar — Learning from Practice — taught by leading lawyers that delves into the nature of practice, professional judgment and the skills necessary to succeed.

Professor Meg Reuter directs the field placement program. She comes to UMKC Law with years of law practice in New York and clinical legal education. She is a national leader in experiential curriculum design. Students interested in a field placement internship should contact Professor Reuter to set up a meeting.

Field placement areas

 

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

Serve in a high-volume prosecutor’s office or with a public defender. Or serve in the criminal division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office prosecuting federal drug and weapons crimes.

Work on every level of government — federal, state or city. Kansas City is privileged to be a federal city, the regional headquarters of scores of federal agencies.

Serve clients and communities in need; work with lawyers who champion environmental protection, civil rights and more.

Get a behind-the-bench view of litigation, with placements in federal, state and family courts.

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)