Prosecution and Defense Clinic

Clinical Teachers

Molly Armour
Lisa Noller

Project Description

The Prosecution and Defense Clinic provides students with an opportunity to learn about the criminal justice system through: (1) a 2-quarter seminar taught by a former Assistant United States Attorney and a career criminal defense attorney; and, (2) a clinical placement in either a prosecutor’s office or public defender’s office. The goal of the clinic is to familiarize students with the legal procedures and issues which arise in a typical criminal case as well as ethical and other social justice issues (such as race and poverty) routinely considered by all criminal justice attorneys and courts. The clinic will provide students with a unique combination of substantive criminal law and procedure, ethics, trial practice (through participation in courtroom exercises built around a single federal criminal case), and hands-on experience through a clinical placement. Each student in the clinic will be responsible for securing a field placement and participating in a pre-screened externship program with a prosecutor or defender office for the winter and spring quarters. Examples include the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois or the Public Defender’s office in any northern Illinois county. (Please note that some offices require law students to apply as early as September for externships beginning the following January.) Students will comply with the clinical placement’s requirements regarding hours and assignments, which will be considered part of their course grade. In the clinical placements, students may be expected to research substantive criminal law issues, draft affirmative and responsive pleadings and memos, interview witnesses and clients, assist lawyers with court hearings and where permitted (and with an appropriate 711 license), appear in court under the supervision of practicing attorneys. Other components of each student’s grade are: seminar classroom participation, including discussion of readings; participation in trial practice exercises; twice monthly journal entries; and, a 10-page practice paper or research paper. There is no final exam (in either quarter) and students will earn up to seven credits for the course, depending in part on the number of hours required for the student’s field placement. Because of the practical component, the class size will be limited to 12 students. Both 2Ls and 3Ls may sign up for this course. Students are encouraged but not required to take Evidence prior to or concurrently with the clinic. A 711 license is not required, but depending on the placement, may be encouraged.

Students who want to learn more about the Prosecution and Defense Clinic may contact Professors Noller and Armour for more information.

Contact: (773) 702-9611

Local Prosecution and Defense Offices

The following agencies are just a few of the suggested hosts at which law students may serve their field placements. Each of the Chicago-area "collar counties" also offer school-year internships, as do federal and local offices in northwest Indiana. Finally, some area nonprofits, such as Cabrini Green Legal Aid, Lawndale Christian Legal Center, First Defense Legal Aid, and the Moran Center for Youth Advocacy in Evanston, offer a variety of defender volunteer positions:

The United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois
This office has an intern program for the spring semester (January-May), which would be equivalent to the Law School’s winter and spring quarters.  Applications for spring semester interns are due in September.  More information may be found on the website:

Illinois Federal Defender Program- Chicago
The Northern District of Illinois Community Defender, a/k/a The Illinois Federal Defender Program, has offices in downtown Chicago. The regular application deadline for winter/spring internships is August 15th, but students interested in the U of C Prosecution & Defense Clinic may apply with a cover letter and resume to Isela Antunez at and should note that in parentheses in email subject line (U of C Prosecution & Defense Clinic). Please apply as soon as possible in the Summer or Fall Quarter. For more information, go to 

Law Office of the Cook County Public Defender
Students seeking this externship should follow the application instructions on the website’s employment page:

Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office
CCSA also hires its law clerks by semesters. The deadline for January (spring semester) placements is November 1st, but there are still pages of the agency's website that lists their old deadline of Jan 1st). Students interested in this placement should contact the office as soon as possible. 

Illinois Attorney General
The AG’s office accepts applications for winter/spring until December 1st. The AG uses a formal application which is posted online each year: .

Kane County Public Defenders
KCPD accepts applications for law student interns who qualify under Supreme Court Rule 711. For spring (January) starts, apply no later than December 1st. See  For more information, please contact Kelli Childress, Beth Peccarelli or Thomas O. McCulloch at (630)232-5835.

Kane County State’s Attorney
KCSA will consider law all law students for internships, regardless for the spring winter semesters. For spring (January) starts, apply no later than December 1st.  See