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Alexis D. Lanham

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Phone: (812) 855-1888
E-mail: adlanham [at] indiana [dot] edu



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B539 Lawyering in the Public Interest

Description This two-credit course works in tandem with B 538 (8 credits) (the DC semester externship program) to give students a full ten academic credits for the semester. Each student participating in the DC Semester Externships must enroll in B 539 as well as B 538. This course has several components # a preliminary assignment designed to allow students to plan their networking in DC and sources for information about their fields of interest, five regular writing assignments that deal with aspects of the legislative and rulemaking processes, and Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests on subjects of each student#s choosing; a class session of roughly four hours on Friday afternoons every other week in which we cover a combination of advanced legal research aimed at federal legislation and rulemaking and the federal FOIA as well as some administrative law coverage (taught by myself, other Maurer faculty on occasion, and Maurer faculty librarians); student presentations about their written products; and interactions during each class period with one or more speakers drawn from alumni/ae working in the DC area in fields of interest to students enrolled for the particular semester. Students should leave this class with a portfolio of short written products suitable to share with potential employers that do not require permission from supervisors or redactions and that match what DC-based lawyers do on a routine basis if they represent clients before Congress, regulatory agencies, or need information from the Executive Branch or independent regulatory commissions. Students will need to arrange their schedules with their host agencies and organizations so as to be free from meetings and deadlines during these bi-weekly class sessions. Classes will begin the first Friday of the semester with in-person meetings commending the Friday after Labor Day and continue to the end of class, which for Fall 2016 will be the Friday before Thanksgiving. Students should expect that the five regular written assignments will be due by 9 am on the Thursday before the class meeting during which presentations will be made. These writing assignments will be in addition to the biweekly #reflective essays# for B 538 that are required by ABA regulations in which the student shares his or her sense of their respective workplaces, work environments, ethical issues observed and resolved, or commentary on growth opportunities and challenges they encounter during their B 538 work during the semester. The two sets of writings will be due on alternate weeks so as to avoid too much work product due in any one week. Students are encouraged to read Professor Fred Aman#s short treatise on Administrative Law in advance of the semester#s start (inexpensive used copies often available on or from the SBA bookstore), the ABA#s Networking for Lawyers (2006) (used copies generally available on and two in the Maurer Library), and one of the following newspapers to stay abreast of happenings in DC: The Washington Post, The Washington Times, Politico, or The Hill, and may wish to follow areas of interest on specialty online trade publications and blogs. I will be available on email ( and by phone (812-855-6318). I will hold the equivalent of #office hours# following the bi-weekly class sessions should anyone have need for them.

Note This course satisfies the professional skills requirement.

Faculty A. Barnes, Hughes, C. Weng, I. Van Der Cruysse

Fall 2016-2017Lawyering in the Public InterestHughes, S.
Spring 2015 - 2016Lawyering in the Public InterestVan Der Cruysse, I.
Fall 2015 - 2016Lawyering in the Public InterestHughes, S.
Spring 2014 - 2015Lawyering in the Public InterestHughes, S.
Fall 2014 - 2015Lawyering in the Public InterestHughes, S.
Spring 2013 - 2014Lawyering in the Public InterestBarnes, J.
Fall 2013 - 2014Lawyering in the Public InterestHughes, S.
Spring 2012 - 2013Lawyering in the Public InterestBarnes, J.
Spring 2011 - 2012Lawyering in the Public InterestBarnes, J.
Spring 2010 - 2011Lawyering in the Public InterestBarnes, J.
Summer I 2009-2010Lawyering in the Public Interestnone
Spring 2009 - 2010Lawyering in the Public InterestBarnes, J.