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BC Law Launches Public Interest Designation Program

2013 news archive

08/16/13

Newton MA--Boston College Law School will be launching a new program to encourage, guide, and recognize students who are committed to a legal career dedicated to public service. The Public Interest Designation Program (PIDP) will provide students with a comprehensive academic and experiential curriculum that will prepare them for a career in public service immediately upon graduation.

The PIDP was established in large part through the efforts of a group of twenty-five students in the BC Law class of 2013. This group worked closely with Associate Director of Public Interest Programs, Kate Devlin Joyce, with the initial goal of creating a special recognition for all those students who have demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to a public service curriculum. Although PIDP will officially launch in the fall of 2013, the twenty-five students who helped create the program were honored by BC Law Dean Rougeau at graduation as the inaugural class and given the title of Public Service Fellows.

Incoming and current students will have to complete five components to be named Fellows. First, there is a substantial in-class requirement: students must complete 15 hours of public interest coursework, compiled from a list of classes applicable to public service, such as Environmental or Labor Law. Second, on the experiential side, students will need to complete a clinic, an independent study with corresponding pro bono placement, or a semester-in-practice at a public interest placement. Students must also spend at least one summer interning with a public sector employer (judicial internships do not count), and complete BC Law’s 50-hour pro bono program. Finally, each student must mentor an incoming 1L who is also interested in public service.

The program has been structured so both current rising 2Ls and 3Ls will be able to participate (certain allowances may be made for rising 3Ls falling short of completing all requirements). Interested students should contact Kate Devlin Joyce at kathleen.devlin@bc.edu for further information.