Program on Law and State Government Externship Course

The Program on Law and State Government (PLSG) externship course integrates the practical experience of working with attorneys in law offices throughout the legislative and executive branches of state government with seminar style classroom learning. Designed to enhance students' understanding of public lawyers' roles within state government and legal infrastructure of that government, the classroom component of the externship course complements the placement experiences of the students in the course.

With numerous placement options, ranging from the Indiana Economic Development Corporation to the Family and Social Services Administration, Program on Law and State Government externships offer students opportunities to:

  • Use and test skills of legal research, legal writing, case analysis, and statutory construction
  • Participate in hearings, work on administrative appeals, and assist in rule and statute drafting
  • Observe how state agencies carry out mandates, create regulations, defend agency actions, and comment on drafted legislation

Information about educational objectives, course format, selection process, participant responsibilities, and the evaluation of extern performance is set forth below. All interested students are encouraged to apply.

Application questions can be directed to Kyle Galster (317-274-0042) in Inlow Hall room 206.

What Students Are Saying...

"The PLSG experience is phenomenal because your placement teaches you the integral parts of law that you do not learn in your tradition law school class, such as effective communication and real life application."
Beau Zoeller, J.D. May 2012
2012 PLSG Extern., Department of Natural Resources

"My placement offered a tremendous opportunity to learn about State government's role in protecting consumers. I truly enjoyed learning and working with a Supervisor who not only welcomed my contribution, but encouraged me to learn more. I would whole heartedly recommend PLSG to any student looking to supplement their law school studies with practical experience."
Vanessa McKenzie, J.D.
PLSG Extern, Indiana Attorney General's Office in the Consumer Protection Division

"The Program on Law and State Government's externship course gave me hands-on opportunity that helped strengthen my skills in legal research and writing. The chance to write about law to people other than lawyers is an uncommon experience in law school."
Elliott McKinnis, J.D., '10
2008 PLSG Extern, Indiana's Office of the Public Access Counselor
2009 PLSG Fellow

"I feel fortunate to have been a part of this program and I know the skills, knowledge, and connections I've acquired will serve me as I begin my career as an attorney. "
Brent Pierce, J.D., '10
2009 PLSG Extern, Office of the Attorney General

"The PLSG externship with the Indiana State Police exemplified the integration of law in society from a perspective not typically found in a traditional law school setting. The PLSG externship provided a unique opportunity to gain firsthand knowledge of the formation, implementation and the enforcement of various laws and the impact of these laws at the state level."
Jessica Wiseman, J.D., '10
2009 PLSG Extern, Indiana State Police

"After presenting my analysis and recommendation in a rather lengthy legal memorandum, my supervising attorney informed me that I would be presenting to our clients directly."
Zoretta Ward-Holloway, J.D., '10
2009 PLSG Extern, Department of Education

"Through the internship (in the Governor's office) I have learned how law and policy interact at the state's highest office. The internship at the Office of the Governor offers a candid look at legal decisions made everyday on behalf of the Governor. The Governor's General Counsel, Steve Schultz, has been extremely accessible and helpful- he has provided guidance on projects and given a general glimpse at his own decision-making process. I would recommend the PLSG Externship Course to all students because it gives students learning opportunities not available in the classroom."
Craig Defoe, '07
PLSG Extern

"I learned so much from having the opportunity to work with the law hands-on. To work as a student administrative law judge was a completely different experience than anything that can be taught in a classroom, and is equally valuable. I was able to put what I had learned in law school into practice, making independent decisions that affected real people. In addition, my confidence in my abilities to practice law in the future benefited tremendously. I would recommend this program to anyone. It is truly a valuable, one-of-a-kind experience."
Margaret Olek Esler, '06
Student Administrative Law Judge

"When selecting which law school to attend, the PLSG was an important part of choosing IU in Indianapolis. The opportunity to be involved in the legislative process while in law school was very attractive to me. Because of the wide array of placement opportunities I felt that I could find an opportunity that fit my interests."
Jennifer Root, '04
2003 PLSG Fellow
2003 Extern, Office of Governor
2002 Extern, IN Trial Lawyers Association
2002 Mediation Course Certificate