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Erin Heaney has had the opportunity to be an intern at the New Hampshire Office of the Attorney General, a judicial extern for the Third Circuit court of Appeals, and a summer associate at a law firm in Washington, D.C. She utilized her research and writing skills obtained in Penn State Law’s research and writing courses to draft interoffice memos, jury instructions, judicial opinions, and briefs, including an amicus brief that was filed with the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.
“In my Applied Legal Analysis & Writing class, one of the most valuable things I learned was the power of concision. Clear and concise writing is such a powerful tool for successful written advocacy. Throughout each of my intern- and externships, I have seen time and again how impactful and persuasive concise writing can be for its readers. It’s true what they say, less really is more.”
David Reimel is a member of the Penn State Law Review. He also has held an internship with the Office of the Colorado State Public Defender and externships with the District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania and the Centre County Court of Common Pleas. In these experiences, he has found Penn State Law’s legal research and writing curriculum to be extremely useful.
“In both clerkships, the judge was not extremely explicit in what should go into an internal memo and how it should be formatted. Upon my first memo assignment, I immediately went back and looked at my Applied Legal Analysis & Writing internal memo assignment and used it as a starting point. It was extremely helpful and was critical to building my confidence in my externship. [...] The resources offered by the library of Penn State Law has been invaluable both as a Law Review student and as an intern. My legal research class gave me all the necessary tools to be a successful law review member. I now feel very confident that, if a particular source is cited, I have the resources at my disposal to find the listed article in a relatively quick period of time.”
Rachel Naquin interned with both the Orleans Parish District Attorney's Office and the Jefferson Parish Public Defenders office in Louisiana. She also holds a position on the Penn State Law Review and the ABA National Appellate Advocacy team. She credits Professor Nicole Chong's legal writing classes, which gave her the skills which made these internships and opportunities possible.
"Penn State Law's legal writing courses gave me a strong foundation that I relied upon for my summer internships and throughout law school. Because of what I learned in my writing classes, I could confidently research any issue required by my supervising attorneys. I also believe I would not have been able to succeed in the journal and moot court write-on competitions without these valuable skills."
Susanna Bagdasarova, ABA Death Penalty Representation Project, said legal research and writing class more than adequately prepared her for the hardest, most thorough types of legal writing assignments.
“The effort our professors required us to put into our class assignments during the semester paid off and made the work seem a lot easier.”
Tanya Cramoy said she could not have succeeded at her summer internship without the benefit of her legal writing classes and Penn State Law Review experience.
“My first assignment at NOAA was to take a skeletal document, flesh it out, and give it a law review edit. That document was translated into two or three languages, and an alternative form was co-sponsored by Norway for submission to an international working group. It was a good feeling.”