U.S. District Court Program (outside Tallahassee)


Faculty Supervisor: Professor Gertz

Credit: 6

Number of Positions: n/a

Program Description:  Externing students work in a clerkship capacity with a federal district court judge or magistrate judge. Duties include legal research, drafting memoranda and preparing orders. Recently, students have externed with judges in Pensacola, Orlando, Tampa, Jacksonville, Ft. Myers, Miami, Macon, Albany, Las Vegas, and Washington D.C. Students who enroll in this externship attend the Judicial Externship Seminar the semester before or after the externship. Most judges accept students every semester, but a few accept students only in the summer.

Prerequisites:  Students must have completed four full semesters of law school and have satisfactorily completed Evidence. Students are not certified pursuant to the Student Practice rule.

Recommended Courses: Federal Jurisdiction (strongly recommended), Conflict of Laws, Employment Discrimination, Federal Criminal Law

Selection Process: In order to enroll in this externship, students must apply and be accepted as an extern by a federal district court judge or magistrate judge. Students apply directly to the judge by sending a cover letter, resume, writing sample (10 pages or less) and transcript. A sample cover letter is available from Professor Gertz. Judges usually do not have established deadlines for externship applications, but applicants should apply at least six months before their intended start date. Selection is done by the judges and generally is based on a student applicant’s overall record, including courses, grades and career goals. Special emphasis is placed on writing ability and grades in Federal Jurisdiction, Evidence and Federal Civil Procedure. Students interested in this externship should discuss it with Professor Gertz before sending their applications to district judges. In addition to applying directly to the judge, students must separately apply to the Florida State Law externship program by the announced deadline.  

Objectives and Methods