The first-year workshop is a mandatory but not-for-credit course that generally meets for two hours each week. In general, the workshop has four principal goals:
- To introduce students to various approaches to public interest lawyering, from class action litigation to working with individual clients and community organizations or writing and lobbying legislation
- To facilitate students getting to know each other and other Program students and faculty
- To expose students to the public interest landscape in Los Angeles
- To introduce students to some examples from among the broad spectrum of what is (and ought to be) public interest lawyering.
The workshop generally entails: (i) a variety of readings, (ii) faculty, student and guest speakers, (iii) a field trip, (iv) discussions of issues of bias, prejudice, discrimination and cultural competence, particularly in relation to race, and as they pervade law and legal practice, and (v) presentation of student group projects. The workshop is also intended to create a supportive community for Program students.