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20 Summer Law Programs for High School Students

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Law student office

20 Summer Law Programs for High School Students

Summer programs for high school students with a focus on law offer a unique opportunity to explore the legal field before college. These experiences can ignite a passion for justice and provide a glimpse into the complexities of the legal system.

The article will cover essential details about these programs, including what they offer and how they can pave the way for your future success. You’ll learn about the benefits of participating and how they can shape your career path.

1. Georgetown University’s Pre-College Online Law Program

  • Location: Online
  • Program Dates: March 17 to March 31 (Session I); March 24 to April 7 (Session II); April 7 to May 5, 2024 (Session III)
  • Application Deadline: March 10 (Session 1); March 17 (Session 2); March 31, 2024 (Session 3)
  • Eligibility: Students ages 13 and up
  • Cost: $1,795

Georgetown University’s Pre-College Online Law Program is a standout choice for high school students eyeing a career in law. Hosted by Georgetown, known for its excellent legal education, this program equips teens with vital analytical and problem-solving skills. Participants dive deep into the legal world, learning from experts and engaging in activities that mimic real legal work.

A lady justice figurine and mortar and gavel

In this program, students benefit from Georgetown’s prestigious academic environment, gaining foundational law knowledge and insights from distinguished legal professionals. It’s a unique opportunity for high school students interested in law to develop skills and understand the legal field, setting a solid groundwork for future success in the legal profession.

2. Yale Young Global Scholars (YYGS): Politics, Law, and Economics (PLE)

  • Location: Yale University
  • Program Dates: June 23 to July 5 (Session 1); July 7 to July 19 (Session 2); July 21 to August 2, 2024 (Session 3)
  • Application Deadline: November 1, 2023 (Early Action); January 10, 2024 (Regular Decision)
  • Eligibility: Sophomores or juniors; ages 16 to 18
  • Cost: $6,500 to $7,700; scholarships provided

YYGS, specifically the PLE track, is a notable summer opportunity for high school students. Over two weeks, participants explore global challenges in these fields, guided by Yale’s renowned faculty. The program fosters a rich learning environment, emphasizing peer discussion, diverse learning formats, and a culminating capstone project.

For students, the PLE track offers invaluable benefits. It exposes them to a global network of peers from over 120 countries, enhancing their understanding of international legal systems. This experience not only broadens their perspectives but also strengthens their college applications, making the Yale Young Global Scholars program a compelling choice for ambitious students.

3. New York University School of Professional Studies (NYU SPS) High School Academy’s Criminal Justice

  • Location: New York City, NY
  • Program Dates: June 24 to June 28 (Session 1); July 8 to July 12 (Session 2); July 22 to July 26, 2024 (Session 4); July 29 to August 2, 2024 (Session 5); August 5 to August 9, 2024 (Session 6)
  • Application Deadline: March 15, 2024 (international); May 17, 2024 (US residents); June 7, 2024 (commuter US)
  • Eligibility: High school students who have completed grades 9, 10, or 11
  • Cost: $50 (application fee); $2,579 per course (tuition); $618 per week (housing and dining)

The NYU SPS High School Academy’s Criminal Justice program provides an immersive look into the U.S. criminal justice system. High school students get to explore topics such as criminal investigation, forensic sciences, and legal procedures. This hands-on learning experience extends from crime scenes to courtrooms, enhancing students’ understanding of law enforcement and legal professions.

The Criminal Justice program at NYU SPS offers unique insights into potential career paths in law enforcement and the legal field. The program is backed by NYU’s commitment to high-quality education, making it a reputable and valuable addition to any student’s academic journey.

4. Just the Beginning (JTB) Summer Legal Institute (SLI)

  • Location: Los Angeles, CA; San Diego, CA; Washington, DC; Chicago, IL
  • Program Dates: June 24 to June 28 (Los Angeles and San Diego, CA); July 8 to July 12 (Washington, DC); July 22 to 26, 2024 (Chicago, IL)
  • Application Deadline: April 5, 2024
  • Eligibility: Grades 9 to 12
  • Cost: Free

JTB SLI provides a comprehensive five-day immersion into the legal field for high school students. This program stands out by focusing on enhancing essential skills such as critical thinking and public speaking. Led by attorney volunteers, it offers interactive sessions that dive deep into the legal profession, equipping students with the tools they need for future success.

a judge talking to attorneys inside a trial room

For students looking into summer law programs, the JTB Summer Legal Institute is an exceptional choice. It not only provides a free, quality educational experience but also emphasizes mentorship and a diverse learning environment. This program’s commitment to accessibility and inclusivity makes it a valuable opportunity for young scholars interested in law.

5. Crump Law Camp

  • Location: Online
  • Program Dates: To be arranged
  • Application Deadline: To be arranged
  • Eligibility: Rising grades 9 through 11; ages 14 to 17
  • Cost: To be arranged

Hosted by Howard Law, the Crump Law Camp offers high school students a deep dive into the legal profession. Through engaging activities like mock trials and civil rights discussions, participants get hands-on experience that mirrors real legal work. This exposure is invaluable for those considering a career in law.

This program is particularly beneficial for students interested in law, as it not only enhances their understanding of the legal field but also develops critical thinking skills essential for law school. With experienced attorneys as mentors, students gain unique insights and form a supportive community, making the Crump Law Camp an excellent stepping stone for aspiring lawyers.

6. American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) National Advocacy Institute

  • Location: Washington, DC
  • Program Dates: July 21 to July 27, 2024
  • Application Deadline: March 3 (Early Decision); April 14, 2024 (Regular Decision)
  • Eligibility: High school students; ages 15 to 18
  • Cost: $2,700; scholarships provided

The ACLU National Advocacy Institute empowers high school and college-aged students through a virtual program focused on grassroots organizing, professional advocacy, and legal activism. Participants explore social justice and civil liberties, gaining advocacy skills and knowledge in a variety of fields, including law and public policy.

This program offers professional development workshops and electives taught by experts. Students become part of a vibrant community, receiving resources like an ACLU swag bag and access to ongoing programs, preparing them to be effective changemakers in their communities.

7. California Innocence Project Legal Internship

  • Location: San Diego, CA
  • Program Dates: Summer, fall, and spring sessions
  • Application Deadline: March 1 (summer session); July 1 (fall session); November 1, 2024 (spring session)
  • Eligibility: High school students
  • Cost: Free; unpaid internship

The California Innocence Project Legal Internship provides an invaluable experience for students interested in criminal justice and advocacy. This program allows participants to engage in activities like legal research, case analysis, and client communication, offering a hands-on approach to the legal profession.

For high school students looking at summer law programs, the internship at the California Innocence Project is a noteworthy opportunity. It offers the chance to work with experienced attorneys on real-life cases, enhancing understanding of the criminal justice system and contributing to important advocacy work. This program not only builds essential legal skills but also offers networking opportunities in a respected organization.

8. New Orleans Chapter of the Federal Bar Association’s Justice Camp

  • Location: New Orleans, LA
  • Program Dates: June 24 to June 28, 2024
  • Application Deadline: To be arranged
  • Eligibility: Grades 9 to 10
  • Cost: Free

Organized by the New Orleans Chapter of the Federal Bar Association, Justice Camp is a dynamic program for rising 9th and 10th graders. It provides a rare chance to explore the legal system and potential legal careers. Students interact with judges, lawyers, and federal law enforcement agents, offering real-world insights into the profession.

law school textbooks

This summer law program is notable for its direct engagement with legal professionals and exposure to various legal careers. It’s offered at no cost, making foundational legal education accessible to young students and sparking interest in legal careers. Justice Camp’s practical approach and supportive environment make it a valuable learning experience.

9. United States Attorney’s Office Eastern District of New York Student Internship

  • Location: New York City, NY
  • Program Dates: To be announced
  • Application Deadline: Rolling admissions
  • Eligibility: Rising seniors
  • Cost: Free; unpaid internship

The United States Attorney’s Office Eastern District of New York Student Internship offers high school students practical legal field experience. Activities include assisting attorneys, conducting legal research, and drafting documents. This opportunity opens doors to various legal careers, providing insights into the profession.

This internship is a key summer law program for high school students. Though unpaid, it provides valuable exposure to federal legal processes and potential career paths in law. The program’s credibility, rooted in its governmental association, makes it a prestigious and impactful experience for aspiring legal professionals.

10. Cornell University International Summer Debate Camp

  • Location: Ithaca, NY
  • Program Dates: July 27 to August 5, 2024
  • Application Deadline: Rolling admissions
  • Eligibility: Middle and high school students; at least 12 years old
  • Cost: $3,750; scholarships provided

The Cornell University International Summer Debate Camp equips high school students with debate, critical thinking, and communication skills. Participants engage in intensive training, practice rounds, and lectures by experienced coaches. This immersive experience sharpens argumentation skills and public speaking proficiency.

This program offers a platform to develop persuasive arguments and engage in respectful discourse. Organized by Cornell University’s ILR School, it guarantees high-quality instruction and a supportive environment for intellectual and leadership growth.

11. National Student Leadership Conference (NSLC) Law and Advocacy Program

  • Location: Georgetown University, Washington, DC; University of Michigan, MI; Yale University, CT
  • Program Dates: June 17 to June 25, June 29 to July 7, July 12 to July 20, July 24 to August 1, 2024 (Georgetown University); July 13 to July 21, July 25 to August 2, 2024 (University of Michigan); June 24 to July 2, July 6 to July 14, July 17 to July 25, 2024 (Yale University)
  • Application Deadline: Rolling admissions
  • Eligibility: Grades 9 through 12
  • Cost: $3,895 (Georgetown University); $3,795 (University of Michigan); $4,095 (Yale University); scholarships provided

The NSLC Law and Advocacy Program offers high school students a deep dive into law and advocacy. Through mock trials and interaction with legal professionals, participants gain hands-on experience and insights into legal procedures, enhancing their understanding of the legal field.

This program provides not only a practical understanding of courtroom dynamics but also a cost-free opportunity to explore legal careers. Organized by a reputable entity, this program equips students with foundational legal knowledge in a supportive environment, making it a valuable stepping stone for aspiring legal professionals.

12. Atlanta Bar Association’s Summer Law Internship Program (SLIP)

  • Location: Atlanta, GA
  • Program Dates: May 29 to July 19, 2024
  • Application Deadline: February 9, 2024
  • Eligibility: Freshmen and sophomores of Classes of 2026 and 2027
  • Cost: Free; $2,000 stipend provided

SLIP offers high school students a hands-on introduction to the legal profession. Participants work in various settings, including law firms, government agencies, and corporations, gaining real-world experience and insights into the legal field.

Mock Trial Program

This program provides not only practical experience but also valuable career exploration opportunities. Organized by the esteemed Atlanta Bar Association, SLIP affords participants a cost-free chance to learn from legal professionals in a supportive environment, fostering an interest in legal careers.

13. Envision Intensive Law and Trial

  • Location: Palo Alto, CA
  • Program Dates: June 24 to July 3; July 6 to July 15; July 17 to 26, 2024
  • Application Deadline: Rolling admissions
  • Eligibility: Grades 9 through 12
  • Cost: $5,145; scholarships provided

The Envision Intensive Law and Trial program offers high school students a comprehensive introduction to the legal profession. Activities include real-world experiences in law firms, government agencies, and corporations, giving participants a firsthand look at the legal field.

This summer law program for high school students is facilitated by Envision, a reputable organization known for its educational programs. It combines practical experience with career exploration, at no cost to participants, making it a valuable and accessible opportunity for those interested in law.

14. Senate Page Program

  • Location: Washington, DC
  • Program Dates: June 9 to June 21 (Session 1); July 21 to August 2, 2024 (Session 2)
  • Application Deadline: January 31, 2024
  • Eligibility: Rising juniors and rising seniors; 16 or 17 years old; GPA of 3.0/B
  • Cost: Free

The Senate Page Program offers high school students an unparalleled glimpse into the U.S. legislative process. As pages, participants assist senators, prepare the chamber for sessions, and observe lawmaking firsthand. This prestigious program is an official function of the U.S. Senate, enhancing its credibility and impact on young learners.

For students seeking summer law programs, the Senate Page Program is a standout choice. It not only provides a stipend and valuable educational opportunities but also fosters skill development in communication and professionalism. This exposure is invaluable for those interested in law or politics, offering a unique perspective on government operations.

15. San Francisco District Attorney’s Office High School Internship

  • Location: San Francisco, CA
  • Program Dates: June 3 to August 9, 2024
  • Application Deadline: April 5, 2024
  • Eligibility: High school students
  • Cost: Free; unpaid internship

The San Francisco District Attorney’s Office High School Internship provides an immersive experience in the legal field for high school students. Engaging in activities like trial preparation and legal research, participants gain hands-on experience and insight into the criminal justice system. This program is designed to expose students to various aspects of legal work and career paths.

This internship offers a unique blend of practical experience and learning opportunities. Organized by a reputable government office, it enables students to work alongside legal professionals, broadening their understanding of the legal profession and providing a supportive environment for skill development.

16. Baltimore Law Links Internship

  • Location: Baltimore City, MD
  • Program Dates: June 24 to August 9, 2024
  • Application Deadline: April 5, 2024
  • Eligibility: High school sophomore or junior attending a Baltimore City public high school
  • Cost: Free; $15/hour paid internship

The Law Links Internship offers Baltimore City public high school juniors and seniors a paid, 7-week experience in law firms and law-related agencies. Alongside gaining hands-on legal field experience, participants attend the Law & Leadership Institute, enhancing their understanding of the legal system and professional development.

a male law student studying

This program is a standout among summer law programs for high school students due to its comprehensive approach to career readiness. By providing professional attire and a blend of practical work with educational seminars, Law Links prepares students for future legal careers, emphasizing personal growth and professional etiquette.

17. State Bar Association of North Dakota (SBAND) High School Mock Trial Program

  • Location: Bismarck, ND
  • Program Dates: March 23, 2024
  • Application Deadline: February 16, 2024
  • Eligibility: Grades 9 through 12
  • Cost: Free; contest prizes provided

The SBAND High School Mock Trial Program immerses high school students in the legal system through mock trial competitions. This initiative, organized by the reputable SBAND, allows students to experience the courtroom firsthand, enhancing their understanding of legal procedures and boosting critical thinking and public speaking skills.

Participation in the SBAND program is a valuable opportunity for students interested in law. It not only offers practical legal experience and skill development in public speaking and critical analysis but also facilitates networking with legal professionals, laying a strong foundation for future careers in law.

18. Constitutional Rights Foundation’s Expanding Horizons Institute (EHI)

  • Location: Los Angeles, CA
  • Program Dates: March 26 to July 11, 2024
  • Application Deadline: January 31, 2024
  • Eligibility: High school sophomore or junior attending an LA County Title I school
  • Cost: Free; paid internship

EHI is tailored for high school sophomores and juniors, focusing on skill development, personal growth, and college readiness. Established in 1995, EHI aims to support first-generation, college-bound students through interactive seminars and paid internships, underlining its dedication to fostering future leaders.

EHI’s reputation is bolstered by its association with the Constitutional Rights Foundation. Offering a unique blend of academic enrichment, hands-on legal exposure, and personal development, EHI prepares participants for college, career, and civic life, equipping them with the tools for success.

19. Manhattan District Attorney’s High School Internship Program

  • Location: Manhattan, NY
  • Program Dates: July 8 to August 9, 2024
  • Application Deadline: March 8, 2024
  • Eligibility: High school sophomores, juniors, or seniors attending school in Manhattan
  • Cost: Free; paid internship

The Manhattan District Attorney’s High School Internship Program offers high school students a deep dive into the criminal justice system over a five-week summer law program. Students participate in workshops, discussions, and a comprehensive mock trial, all within the context of one of the United States’ most prestigious prosecutor’s offices.

This program is distinguished not only by its practical approach to law education but also by offering participants minimum wage compensation, making it a valuable summer opportunity for students interested in the legal field. It equips participants with a unique perspective on legal processes and the professionalism required in an office setting, preparing them for future careers in law.

20. Dallas Bar Summer Law Intern Program (SLIP)

  • Location: Dallas, TX
  • Program Dates: June to July 2024
  • Application Deadline: March 29, 2024
  • Eligibility: Dallas Independent School District (ISD) juniors; minimum academic average of 85
  • Cost: Free; paid internship

The Dallas Bar SLIP offers Dallas ISD juniors an exclusive eight-week internship with law firms and corporate legal departments. This opportunity provides a practical introduction to the legal profession, supported by the Dallas Bar Association and Dallas Independent School District, ensuring a credible and enriching experience.

Close up of a lot of law reports in library

Tailored specifically for students interested in law, SLIP emphasizes professional development and legal industry exposure. Through real-world legal environments and activities, participants gain invaluable insights and skills, positioning them well for future legal careers.

How to Choose the Right Summer Law Program

Choosing the right summer law program requires research and reflection on your interests and career goals. Consider programs that offer practical experience, such as mock trials or internships, and those aligned with prestigious institutions or legal organizations for credibility and quality education.

Factor in logistics like location, duration, and cost. Programs vary widely, from local offerings to prestigious summer law programs for high school students at top universities. Seek financial aid opportunities if necessary, and prioritize programs that align with your academic and professional aspirations, ensuring a beneficial and impactful experience.

What Are the Benefits of Attending a Summer Law Program as a High School Student?

Attending a summer law program exposes high school students to the legal profession and its various career paths. It provides a foundation in legal theory and practice, enhancing critical thinking, analytical skills, and public speaking abilities. This early exposure can spark a lifelong interest in law and justice.

Furthermore, summer law programs for high school students offer networking opportunities with legal professionals and peers with similar interests. These connections can provide mentorship, guidance, and support in pursuing legal careers, making these programs invaluable for ambitious students eyeing a future in law.

How Do Summer Law Programs Enhance College Applications?

Participation in summer law programs demonstrates initiative, dedication, and a genuine interest in the legal field to college admissions committees. It sets applicants apart, showcasing their willingness to invest time in their intellectual growth and professional development outside the traditional classroom setting.

Moreover, these experiences enrich personal statements and interviews with unique insights and stories. Engaging in summer law programs allows students to discuss specific legal interests, experiences, and the skills they’ve acquired, making their college applications compelling and distinctive.

What Types of Legal Careers Can Summer Law Programs Introduce to Students?

Summer law programs provide a broad overview of the legal profession. They introduce students to careers ranging from criminal defense and corporate law to public interest and environmental law. Through workshops, lectures, and hands-on activities, students explore various legal pathways and discover areas of interest.

These programs also highlight non-traditional legal careers, such as legal journalism, policy analysis, and legal technology. Exposure to a wide range of professionals and legal settings encourages students to think creatively about their career paths and the impact they can make in the legal field.

How Do Summer Law Programs Prepare Students for Law School?

Summer law programs introduce high school students to the rigors of legal study, familiarizing them with the Socratic method, case law analysis, and legal writing. This early exposure reduces the learning curve associated with the first year of law school, providing a competitive edge.

Additionally, these programs often include interactions with law school admissions counselors, offering valuable advice on the law school application process. Students learn what law schools look for in candidates, how to choose the right school, and the importance of LSAT scores and GPA, preparing them thoroughly for future legal education.

a student in a trial room simulation

Conclusion

Summer law programs offer high school students an unparalleled head start into the world of law. These programs equip them with knowledge, skills, and connections that lay the groundwork for future success.

As you consider stepping into this rewarding journey, remember that the experiences gained can shape your academic and professional future in profound ways. They light your path towards becoming a catalyst for justice and change in society.

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