The Housing & Community Development Legal Clinic is the only clinic at DePaul that teaches students to be a deal lawyer. Clinic students have the opportunity to negotiate and draft contracts, negotiate deals, research legal issues, draft client memoranda, evaluate business issues with the client and the client’s business team, and engage in extensive client counseling. They also serve as the primary legal contact for at least one client and work in teams to collaborate on relevant client issues.
Students work in one of two areas:
The law clinic, without a doubt, prepared me for private practice next year. There are definitely times when the clinic takes up a lot of time, frustrates me, and provides me with an overwhelming feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment. However, this was the biggest lesson for me: that’s exactly what life outside of law school will be like. You’re going to feel like you don’t have enough time, your client WILL frustrate you, and then you’re going to “wow!” your client. But these ebbs and flows are just part of the game, and I’m sure glad that now, I get to hit the ground running next year, as opposed to feeling lost in the big, scary world outside of law school.
The clinic offers students opportunities to learn how to practice as a business or corporate lawyer, as well as to gain experience in real estate, community and economic development, affordable housing and public policy.
The yearlong, 6 credit hour clinic (3 credits per semester), includes a seminar that meets twice each week. Students learn about affordable housing law and public policy, poverty law, the public policy behind cultural competency and the financial analysis of real estate development. In addition, students receive instruction in contract drafting, negotiation and transactional drafting, among other skills. The clinic also offers a series of classes on the legal and policy evolution of affordable housing, using the public housing in Chicago as a learning tool.
Law school clinical teaching fellowships. Prof. Lawton and her research assistant, Joanne Moon, collected a listing of clinical teaching fellowships known to be available as of April 2012. This is a non-scientific gathering of information and is meant for informational purposes only. Please contact Prof Lawton directly for any updates, additions, or corrections.