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The Program

The Canadian Summer Externship Program in Ottawa provides U.S. law students with an opportunity to earn six academic credits in 32 class days during the six-week period from May 16 through June 27, 2014. The program consists of two integrated components. The first is a field placement, during which the student will be working for a six-week period under the supervision of Members of Parliament or public lawyers. The second is a classroom component, which consists of an introductory course on the Canadian legal system, a series of weekly seminars on topical Canadian legal issues, and a speakers' program featuring prominent Canadians visiting with students over lunch at the House of Commons private dining room.

Educational Objectives

Currently in its twenty-ninth year, this ABA-accredited program is intended to provide law students with an educational experience in which they will come to understand the Canadian political and legal systems at work and foster an appreciation of Canadian social, cultural, and political institutions and character. Students will:

  • Gain a broad exposure to Canadian law and legal institutions
  • Obtain specific insight and particularized experience in Canadian law
  • Conduct legal research using Canadian legal sources
  • Learn firsthand how the Canadian government and its legal institutions approach problems

Program Accreditation

The Program has received the approval of the American Bar Association, Section of Legal Education. Michigan State University College of Law is approved by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools.

Student Performance and Grading

Both the Program Director and the supervising lawyer will evaluate student work, and the Program Director will grade each student's performance. Upon successful completion of the program, six hours graded credit will be awarded by the Michigan State University College of Law as part of its fully accredited curriculum. Acceptance of credit is at the discretion of the applicant's law school. It is unlikely that participation in a foreign summer program may be used to accelerate graduation. Students interested in acceleration should contact their home school for information. If there are any questions concerning acceptance of credit, or if more information is required by the applicant's Dean, please contact the Program Director at 517-432-6892 or at 517-432-6818.

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