Directory

University of Missouri--Columbia School of Law

University of Missouri--Columbia
School of Law
203 Hulston Hall
Columbia, MO 65211
www.law.missouri.edu

Law School Pro Bono Programs

Contact Information

Linda Lorenz
Director of Public Service/Public Interest Law
Career Development Office
University of Missouri School of Law
103H Hulston Hall
Columbia, MO 65211-4300
P: (573) 882-0940
Fax: (573) 882-9625
E-mail

Category Type

Formal Voluntary Pro Bono Program Characterized by a Referral System with a Coordinator

Description of Programs

With the assistance of the Director of Public Service/Public Interest, who will serve as the Program Coordinator, students are provided with opportunities to participate in a variety of service activities for the community. The program is voluntary. It is not considered a graduation requirement. Students self-report their pro bono hours and are expected to identify and develop pro bono opportunities in addition to those identified by the Program Coordinator.

Pro bono work is defined broadly to include law related activities, as well as meaningful services that are not law related. Credit-granting activities, such as work students perform as part of the Externship course, will not count as part of the pro bono program.

Pro Bono Month is celebrated in October to coincide with National Pro Bono Week. During October, we present programming and run short-term clinics to raise awareness of the importance of participation in pro bono work.

Location of Programs

The program is coordinated by the Office of Career Development and Student Services and the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs.

Staffing/Management/Oversight

The program is coordinated by the Office of Career Development and Student Services and the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs.

Funding

None listed

Student Run Pro Bono Groups/Specialized Law Education Projects

None listed

Faculty and Administrative Pro Bono

None listed

Awards/Recognition

At the end of each academic year, students achieving a specified number of hours of pro bono work are recognized with a certificate.

Community Service

Providing community service is encouraged and treated the same as providing pro bono legal services under the program.

Law School Public Interest Programs

Contact Information

Linda Lorenz
Director of Public Service/Public Interest Law
Career Development Office
University of Missouri School of Law
103H Hulston Hall
Columbia, MO 65211-4300
P: (573) 882-0940
Fax: (573) 882-9625
E-mail
www.law.missouri.edu

Certificate/Curriculum Programs

In order to be recognized as having completed a Tax Concentration, students must engage in at least 20 hours of supervised pro bono activities related to tax law over the course of their law school career with either the Voluntary Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA) or the Non-Profit Project (assisting organizations on campus obtain tax-exempt status).

Public Interest Centers

The Center for the Study of Dispute Resolution (CSDR), Robert Bailey, Assistant Dean and Director of CSDR, (573) 882-2052

Public Interest Clinics

Criminal Prosecution Clinic - Under the supervision of a professor (who is also an Assistant Prosecuting Attorney), students learn how to evaluate evidence, interview clients and witnesses, prepare for trial, and conduct direct and cross examinations. Cases include a broad range of misdemeanors and felonies.

Family Violence Clinic - In this clinic, students represent indigent victims of domestic violence. Students are supervised by a clinical professor, and appear in court on such matters as orders of protection, motions for child custody and support, and clemency petitions. The students may also draft and lobby for legislation concerning abused women, children, and families.

Innocence Clinic - This is a joint clinic among the MU and UMKC law schools and a non-profit group. Law students work under the supervision of the Clinic Director, a practicing lawyer, on cases of possible actual innocence from six states.

Landlord-Tenant Practicum –Law students represent indigent individuals in eviction proceedings or who wish to sue their landlords for habitability or non-return of a security deposit. Students may also represent tenants who reside in public or subsidized housing in administrative actions brought by or against a Housing Authority. Students work under the supervision of a staff attorney with Mid-Missouri Legal Services.

Legislative Practicum - Students are assigned to work with individual legislators or staff members at the Missouri General Assembly. The students assist members of the General Assembly by drafting legislation, preparing materials for hearings, and conducting research and analysis to respond to broad public policy issues as well as constituent concerns. On occasion students may be assigned to legislative committees, legislative staff support services, or to groups lobbying for legislation.

Externships/Internships

Through the externship program, students are given develop the skills necessary to bridge the gap between law school and law practice. Students are able to prepare for effective and responsible participation in the legal profession by applying the core concepts learned in law school courses to the challenges presented in the actual, real-world practice of law.

The externship program allows a student to work under the supervision of a lawyer or judge in a public law office, government agency, or not for profit organization or for an attorney in private practice so long as the student is assisting only with pro bono work performed by that attorney, for such purposes as:

  1. Enhancing their legal research and writing skills
  2. Taking part in and observing law practice or judicial decision making
  3. Using concepts and skills learned in regular law school classes
  4. Appearing before courts and administrative agencies under Missouri Supreme Court Rule 13
  5. Understanding the requirements of compliance with the rules of professional responsibility
  6. Considering the difficult human and ethical problems that face modern lawyers

Classes with a Public Service Component

Death Penalty Law
Disability Law
Education Law
Elder Law
Employment Discrimination
Environmental Law
Fair Housing
Freedom of Speech and Association
Gender & the Law
Immigration Law
Landlord/Tenant Law & Practice
Landlord/Tenant Practicum
Law & Society
Legislative Practicum
Public Policy Dispute Resolution

Public Interest Journals

Journal of Environmental and Sustainability Law

PI Career Support Center

The Office of Career Development and Student Services employs a full-time Director of Public Service/Public Interest Law, Linda Lorenz, Ms. Lorenz. Among other skills she brings to this position, Ms. Lorenz has received Federal Advisor Certification. Ms. Lorenz uses her contacts with attorneys who work at federal and state agencies and public interest organizations to provide programming, mentoring, networking and employment opportunities for law students. In addition, every year, we sponsor a trip to Chicago for interested law students to attend the Midwest Public Interest Law Career Conference.

Loan Repayment Assistance Programs (LRAP)

None listed

Post-Graduate Fellowships/Awards

Law School Funded:

None listed

Graduate Student Funded:

None listed

Other Funding Sources:

None listed

Term Time Fellowships/Scholarships

Law School Funded:

None listed

Graduate Student Funded:

None listed

Other Funding Sources:

None listed

Summer Fellowships

Law School Funded:

Mizzou Law Shortridge Loan Program - The Shortridge Loan Program is designed to help law students gain practical experience in the public sector. Mizzou Law provides up to 10 loans of $4,000 - $5,000 to selected students who work in the area of public service or public interest during the summer. The Shortridge loan offers a 0% interest rate, a 12-month grace period beginning after graduation before entering repayment, and a 7-year repayment term.

Graduate Student Funded:

None listed

Other Funding Sources:

None listed

Extracurricular and Co-Curricular Programs

Incoming 1L students, as their first Orientation activity, volunteer at the Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri.

Student Public Interest Groups

American Constitution Society
ACLU Student Chapter
Federalist Society
J. Reuben Clark Society
Law Students for Public Media
Missouri Equal Justice Foundation
Law Students for Reproductive Justice
Phi Alpha Delta
Phi Delta Phi
Student Animal Legal Defense Fund
Women's Law Association

August 7, 2018