Summer in Government

Summer in Government


Summer in Government Field Placements (4 Credits)

The Summer in Government Field Placement Course offers students a unique opportunity to spend seven weeks working in the capital of New York state under the supervision of a lawyer-mentor.

Students wishing to experience government lawyering in a "real-life" learning laboratory will work side-by-side with policymakers, decision makers and other lawyers on a wide range of law and public policy issues. Students will also explore overarching issues in law practice, professional responsibility and public policy through classroom presentations from government and other attorneys, in-class assignments and exercises and reflective journaling.

Who is Eligible?

All law students who have completed one year at an ABA-approved law school are eligible to apply for this unique experience. Participation in this course requires a daily physical presence in New York's Capital Region.

What are the Requirements?

All four credit field placements require students to work at their assigned offices for a minimum of 168 hours for the semester (approx. 24 hours/week during the 7 week summer term). Students must arrange their schedule directly with the placement. It is recommended that students schedule large blocks of time and consult with their supervising attorney as to days/times that are most advantageous to work. (e.g., when trials, hearing, meetings, conferences, etc. are likely to take place.)

Students are also required to participate in a weekly, two-hour classroom component at Albany Law School. Students must complete all class assignments and program-related paper work, and attend a mid-semester meeting in order to receive credit for the course.​

How Many Credits are Awarded?

The Summer in Government Field Placement Course carries a total of 4 academic credits. These credits are earned through completion of the course requirements.

Benefits of Taking the Course:

Whether the student is drafting legislation or rule making, preparing for legislative or administrative hearings, participating in policy meetings or conferences, or supporting a litigation team, or engaging in other lawyering tasks, students will benefit from, and gain an appreciation for, the varied skills required to be an effective lawyer. Students will also have a unique opportunity to gain an insider's view of the inner-workings of government, and to network with government lawyers, officials and other practitioners.

Potential Placement Offices:

Most State agencies and public law offices can host field placement students for the summer.

For a complete list of possible government and public service placements and for additional information including links to placement websites, click here. Or from the main Albany Law School website, click on Clinic & Justice Center, then Field Placement Clinic, then Available Placements. Not all placements listed are available during summer term, and some placements have specific application requirements.

In order to secure a placement that is customized to a student's particular interests or goals, notice of intent to participate in this course must be given by the student to the placement coordinator by March 22.​

Application and Procedure for Course Registration:

Informational Meeting

Students interested in a Summer in Government placement may contact Robert Batson,, placement coordinator/course instructor, at the Government Law Center to set up an appointment to obtain more information about the course and to discuss interests and placement options.​


Albany Law School students planning to enroll in the course must apply on the Career Services Manager (CSM). Students from other law schools should contact Robert Batson,, placement coordinator/course instructor, for an application.


During the placement process, students will likely be asked to participate in an interview with a placement Supervising Attorney.  Interviews may be evaluative, but are typically used as an opportunity for the Supervising Attorney to meet the student, to discuss his or her interests, describe the work of the agency or office,  identify the type of assignments and tasks available, and determine whether the placement fits with the student's interests, goals, and expectations.​

Placement Card Sign-up

Upon acceptance at a placement office, students will then be instructed to sign a placement confirmation card at the Government Law Center.


Upon receipt of the confirmation card from the  Government Law Center, the Registrar's Office will add the course to the student's summer session schedule.

Tuition and Fees

Students planning to enroll in the course will be required to pay the appropriate tuition and fees for summer session. The registration deadline for the 2013 summer session is May 20. Questions concerning financial aid should be directed to the Financial Aid Office.​

Contact Information


Robert Batson, Government Lawyer in Residence
Placement Coordinator/Course Instructor
Government Law Center
Telephone: 518-445-3348

Barbara Chandler
Administrative Assistant/Paralegal
Law Clinic & Justice Center
Telephone: 518-445-2328

Professor Nancy Maurer
Director, Field Placement Clinic
Law Clinic & Justice Center
Telephone: 518-445-2328


Joann Fitzsimmons
Registrar Telephone: 518-445-2324

Financial Aid

Andrea Wedler
Director of Financial Aid
Telephone: 518-445-2357


Admissions Office
Telephone:  518-445-2326

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)
about the Summer in Government Field Placement Course

How do I apply to take this course?

​Albany Law School students must apply on the Career Services Manager (CSM). Students from other law schools should contact the course instructor at​ 

Is it competitive to get into this course?

No. Although Albany Law School cannot guarantee that you will be accepted at a particular office, all students will be accepted into the course, assuming all other procedures for registration are followed. Every effort will be made to secure your first or second choice placement.​

Can I take other Summer Session courses in addition to this course?

Yes. You may take any one of the other summer session course offerings in addition to this course.

Do I have to be an Albany Law School student to take this course?

No. The Summer in Government/Summer Field Placement course is open to all students at ABA-accredited law schools who have completed one year of law school.

Do I have to be a United States citizen to take this course?

No. International students, who are enrolled at and attending an ABA-approved law school are eligible to take this course. Please note, however, that certain agencies may impose restrictions on whether or not an international student will be accepted for a placement.​

Can I be placed in a government office outside of the Capital Region (e.g., Washington, D.C.)?

No. Summer in Government Field Placements are only offered in New York's Capital Region at approved placements.  Students seeking placements outside the Capital Region may register at a local law school and transfer their credits to Albany Law School.  Students will need to confirm with the Registrar that the credits can be transferred.​

Can I get financial aid to help me pay tuition and fees for the course?

Yes. Students must enroll in a minimum of five (5) credits to borrow funds through the Federal Stafford Loan Program for summer session courses. To apply for these funds, students must complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and financial aid summer request form. The FAFSA can be completed at Summer request forms are available in the Financial Aid Office.

Students enrolling in less than five (5) credits are eligible to apply for private loans.

Albany Law School students cannot receive fund disbursements until Spring grades are available and satisfactory academic progress is verified. Summer session tuition can be deferred until funds are disbursed.​