Lannister_JD wrote:Can anyone talk about the defenders? Is it worth joining for an incoming 1L? What's the time commitment like? Thanks in advance!
Is it worth joining as an incoming 1L? Yes. Most Defenders join during 1L. The experience is very unique because you actually represent clients without an attorney in real hearings. The only place you can do that more often as a 1L is PLAP.
The minimum time commitment is 1 hour per week in a team meeting and 1 case per semester. Most people do more than one case, but there are still a lot of 1Ls who just do one case their first semester. A case is generally a few hours of prep followed by the better part of a morning or afternoon. Depending on your 1L schedule, you may have to miss class to appear at the hearing. Professors are generally understanding of this.
As a side note, any Journals, orgs, or SPOs that you don't participate in as a 1L will basically never be relevant on your resume unless you are 100% public interest or want to do a clerkship. Since EIP is before fall semester, the orgs you participate in 2L and 3L are largely for your own interest. (With the two exceptions above.) That's why so few 3Ls are in leadership positions.