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Clinical Education at UT Law

Real Cases. Real Experience.

Legislative Lawyering Clinic

Student Experience

“I was a bit apprehensive about being among the first students to participate in a new clinic. However, I found Professor Brady’s Legislative Lawyering Clinic to be one of the highlights of my time at UT Law. The clients were diverse and interesting, the work was rewarding, and the course’s classroom component supplemented our projects beautifully. Professor Brady’s knowledge of the inner workings of the state government is second to none, and I highly recommend this clinic to any student who is fascinated with the legislative process.”
—Aaron K. Thompson, ’10, Sanders, Bruin, Coll & Worley, Roswell, N.M.

“One of the most important skills I learned because of the course came from an exercise that seemed utterly ridiculous at the time. We held a mock interest group meeting to discuss a piece of proposed legislation. Like a high school drama class, Professor Brady cast each of us in roles as elected officials, as directors of state agencies, as representatives of a interested organization or as concerned citizens who were directly affected by the legislation. We then argued from the position of that person. It became quite humorous to watch my non-actor classmates portray the characters such as my friend who is a veteran of running democratic political campaigns play a far right political appointee of a republican governor to a state agency. Even though the bad acting got over the top, I learned a lot about my own negotiation skills and how to further develop them. I hope to spend a good bit of my career around the Legislature where negotiation is an essential skill that I would not have otherwise been taught in law school but for this course.”
—Joshua S. Houston, ’10, Legislative Counsel, Texas Impact, Austin

“Participating in the Legislative Lawyering Clinic was one of the best decisions I made while at UT Law. Through the clinic, I had the opportunity to work with a legal services organization to research and draft legislation that will improve the lives of elderly and low-income Texans. I also gained a strong foundation in the art of legislative drafting and an appreciation for the extensive negotiation that often accompanies the development of legislation. My experience in the clinic helped me discover the type of law that I want to practice, and will no doubt prove invaluable in my legislative counsel position after graduation.”
—Erin Elena Smith, ’10, Legislative Counsel, Texas Legislative Council, Austin

“The Legislative Lawyering Clinic is an invaluable experience for any student who would like to explore practicing at the intersection of law and politics.
“During my semester in the Clinic (Spring 2010), I worked as a student counsel for the City of Buda. In that capacity, I drafted and oversaw the enactment of an ordinance regulating First Amendment activities within the City of Buda, helped to develop several reforms to the Buda Economic Development Corporation and provided counsel to the City Attorney regarding a case pending before the Texas Supreme Court. These experiences gave me an inside look at the lawmaking process and allowed me to gain practical experience in the field of legal drafting.
“In the summer following my time with the Clinic, I served as a law clerk on U.S. Senator John Cornyn's Judiciary Committee Staff. The lessons and skills of the Legislative Lawyering Clinic were extremely pertinent and useful in that job, as I believe they will continue to be for many years to come.”
—Stephen Tausend, ’10, Counsel, U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, Washington