A Message from the Dean
Confidential Sources on Trial
Shelter From the Storm
Harrison Report: Post-World War II Bombshell
A Case of Political Descent
Clinic Hits Thirty
The Brief
The Board of Overseers
Faculty News & Publications
Philanthropy
Alumni Briefs
In Memoriam
Case Closed
 
In This Training Ground, Students Find Experience is the Best Teacher
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It has been equally exciting for Raj Parekh, who calls the clinic “the gem of Penn Law.” Parekh, who graduates this year, has spent the spring semester in the Legislative Clinic, working for the Senate Judiciary Committee. He writes memos to chief counsel and senators on the constitutionality of proposed legislation and amendments. Describing the work as intellectually satisfying, Parekh exclaims: “The clinic is, by far, the best experience that I’ve had at Penn Law.”

But, despite its popularity with students, it has not always been an easy ride for the clinic. From the start, old-school academics worried that the clinic would drain resources from the scholarly program. Faculty suggested students work in downtown law firms or apprentice after law school to gain practical experience. As the debate percolated during the late 1970s, rumors circulated about efforts to close the clinic. When students got wind of it, they protested.

As clinic administrator Valerie Rose recalls, “Students really went on a campaign. (They) put up big posters all around the school, the billboards reading ‘Save the Clinic.’” The apocalypse never came but the program became itinerant.
 
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