Law Clerk/Intern Application
The Santa Cruz County District Attorney’s Office represents the People of the State of California in all criminal prosecutions in Santa Cruz County. The Office is responsible for filing criminal charges, appearing in court in all felony and misdemeanor cases, and representing the People in all trials and sentencing proceedings in the Superior Court of Santa Cruz. The Santa Cruz County District Attorney’s Office volunteer Law Clerk Internship Program seeks to provide a holistic hands-on experience to individuals interested in criminal law. Our internship program is designed to focus on learning and preparing our law clerks for future employment. Tasks are assigned on a variety of legal issues and prosecutorial work, and the program does not assign law clerks to specific units or attorneys within our office. The duration of each internship is flexible to a candidate’s availability.
First Year (1L) Law Clerks’ primary task is to assist in researching and writing motions. 1L Clerks may also assist in trial preparation as opportunities permit. 1L Clerks are encouraged and provided substantial opportunities to observe courtroom proceedings, speak with members of our office, and meet with other actors in the criminal justice process. Prior criminal law experience is not expected. Candidates who have not decided on a career path or are still exploring the possibility of criminal law work are encouraged to apply.
Second Year (2L) Law Clerks research, write, and argue motions; assist attorneys in preparing and conducting misdemeanor calendar; and assist in trial preparation as opportunities permit. 2L Clerks are also encouraged to observe courtroom proceedings, speak with members of our office, and meet with other actors in the criminal justice process. 2L Clerks must be certified by the State Bar of California to appear in court. Prior criminal law experience is preferred but not required. Candidates interested in a career as a prosecutor are preferred, but candidates still exploring their career options are welcome to apply.
Post-bar Law Clerks primarily assist the misdemeanor unit and are assigned tasks that are expected of a first-year attorney. Post-bar Clerks are given a high degree of autonomy to complete their assignments. Post-bar Clerks research, write, and argue motions; conduct misdemeanor calendar; assist in trial preparation; and conduct a jury trial under the supervision of an attorney as opportunities permit. Post-bar Clerks must be certified by the State Bar of California to appear in court. Prior criminal law experience is expected, but outstanding candidates without criminal law experience are considered. As the goal of the post-bar program is to prepare participants to begin work as a prosecuting attorney, all candidates should be seeking work in a district attorney’s office.