What do students do in this clinic?
Deploy basic civil advocacy skills to address community needs through client representation and policy advocacy. Most recently, the clinic has been focusing on cases that address the affordable housing crisis in the Twin Cities. Students represent low-wealth individuals, mostly African-American and Latina, in conciliation court and in emergency repair cases referred from SMRLS and the Community Stabilization Project. Students have also developed policy papers in the housing area.
What happens in the classroom component?
Discussion of lawyering skills and themes, such as law reform and ethical challenges; case rounds, small written assignments and class presentations.
What do students learn in this clinic?
Listening; collaborating with clients as partners; fact investigation; systems investigation; context investigation; creative problem-solving and solution-framing; legal research; persuasive advocacy; client counseling; settlement negotiation and drafting; witness preparation; critical reflection; making the justice process uplifting or inspiring for clients and communities.
When is this clinic offered?
Every fall and spring
How many credits?
Are students permitted or encouraged to take this clinic for additional semesters?
Students who begin in the fall sometimes want to continue in the spring to complete ongoing work, but it is not required.
Are there any required or recommended pre-requisites?
Professional Responsibility and Advocacy
Can students with full-time jobs take this clinic?Yes
Can students who live outside the Twin Cities take this clinic?No
Who should take this clinic?
Anyone who wants to learn the skills of interviewing clients and taking their issues to resolution; anyone interested in small or solo practice focused in communities; anyone who wants to explore the types of clients with whom they prefer to work; anyone concerned about the affordable housing crisis in their community who wants to develop tools to address it.