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The Department of Public Defense offers full-time summer internships (paid, subject to budget approval) to law students who have completed their second year of law school. We're looking for students with a demonstrated commitment to social justice and advocacy on behalf of indigent persons. In return, students receive courtroom experience, excellent training, and mentoring by skilled public defenders. When possible, our summer interns appear in court (under close supervision) and represent clients at bond hearings, motion hearings, even at trial. We offer internships in nearly all of DPD’s practice areas, including criminal defense (misdemeanor and felonies), juvenile defense, family defense, involuntary treatment (civil commitment), and sex offender commitments. All this, while living in or near Seattle, a lively city surrounded by mountains and water. It's a great place to spend the summer.


Staff attorneys Reid Burkland and Lauren Conner recently met with potential interns in Los Angeles.

Applications are now open for our 2021 internship program! 

DPD has begun actively recruiting second-year law students for our 10-week internship program beginning in June 2021. Learn more about the position, including how to apply, by visiting the job posting on King County's careers site. Because of COVID-19, it's possible the summer 2021 internship program will be remote, rather than in-person. Either way, we plan to provide an excellent, hands-on program, giving law students a chance to work with skilled public defenders and to learn what it means to fight for the rights of individuals who are poor, often marginalized, and disproportionately people of color.

Watch a short video featuring four interns from DPD's 2020 class.


Read about DPD's 2019 class of interns on our blog For The Defense.