About the Clinic:
In this year-long clinic, students provide counsel on community development issues to residents, advocacy organizations, social service providers, and businesses in the Tenderloin and Mid-Market neighborhoods. Projects vary each year, but typically involve advocacy and counsel related to proposed land-use developments, to ensuring that Tenderloin and Mid-Market residents benefit from new economic initiatives, and to participating in City and State policymaking around development issues. The Clinic focuses on the intersection of law, policy, and politics and reveals the full complexity and institutional infrastructure of the Tenderloin and Mid-Market community.
Regularly scheduled class time will be four (4) hours per week in the fall term and two (2) hours per week in the spring term. Seminar sessions involve discussions of assigned readings and “rounds” discussions of fieldwork projects. Topics include the historical and institutional context of the Tenderloin and Mid-Market community, the history and politics of San Francisco development, the role of community development corporations, the community economic development (CED) movement, and the role of lawyers in CED work. In the fall semester, students write a 15-page analytical paper comparing the transformation of a low-income Boston neighborhood to current efforts in San Francisco to protect and revitalize the Tenderloin, Mid-Market, and other low-income neighborhoods. In the spring semester, students will write detailed final field notes summarizing and analyzing their fieldwork and its connection to the readings and seminar discussions, and will articulate the central lessons learned about lawyering, CED work, and themselves.
Students will work an average of ten (10) hours per week as legal counsel to Tenderloin and Mid-Market community organizations and citywide coalitions working on affordable housing, land use, and economic development issues. Students will work in pairs with a clinic partner, write bi-weekly field notes describing and analyzing their fieldwork, and meet bi-weekly with Prof. Piomelli to discuss their work. Fieldwork activities typically include interviewing community clients and leaders, attending community meetings, carrying out factual and legal research, counseling group representatives, and making public presentations. Depending upon the project, students may also draft position papers, comment letters, proposed regulations or legislation, and contractual agreements.
Open to: 3rd, 4th, 5th or 6th semester students.
8 units: Yearlong, 2-unit non-GPA class and 2-unit fieldwork each semester must be taken concurrently. Students will receive a letter grade at the end of spring semester (based on all aspects of their work in the seminar and fieldwork), as well as credit/no-credit for the fieldwork component.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
To enroll: The application deadline for all clinics is April 12, 2013. Click here for the CED Clinic Application Instructions and here for CED Clinic Application Form. As indicated in the instructions, you will need to attend a student information session on April 11th or April 12th. If you have additional questions, contact Professor Ascanio Piomelli at email@example.com.