Field Studies Program

The Field Studies Program provides students specializing in Native American and Indigenous Peoples Law with experiential learning opportunities to earn 2 to 12 hours of academic credit hours while gaining practice experience under the supervision of an attorney. Externs do on-site, unpaid externships with federally recognized Indian Nations, other Indigenous People, law firms, government organizations, and othe organizations that provide services to Indian Nations or other Indigenous Peoples at home and abroad.

Worcester externs are supervised by a field supervisor and a TU Law academic supervisor. Externs get the opportunity to develop within several broad practice competencies (knowledge of Native American and Indigenous Peoples Law, marshaling legal information, critical legal analysis, effective legal communications, and practice legal skills) and professionalism competencies (professionalism duties, effective client service, leadership skills, management skills, and business development techniques).

The field supervisor provides Worcester externs with a high degree of mentoring, competency development opportunities, effective performance feedback, and overall performance assessment.

The academic supervisor monitors the performances of Worcester externs and their field supervisors; assigns externs tasks to help them reflect critically on their externship experiences with respect to such topics as legal ethics, professionalism values, social justice, differences among legal workplaces, the role of lawyers in the community, and potential career choices; conducts a 14-hour non-credit course designed to engage the externs in discussions about these topics; and assigns final grades.