By Nathaniel Hobbs
The Volunteer Lawyers and Professionals for the Arts offers semester-long internship/externship programs in the Spring, Summer, and Fall semesters with the goal of exposing students to a number of different areas of legal practice and teaching them new skills that can be applied universally. Interns/Externs primarily perform administrative tasks to ensure the VLPA keeps up to date with its client and volunteer information and helps to facilitate the process of providing clients with a volunteer attorney and professional help. Some of the most important tasks our interns/externs are responsible for include performing client-intake calls, researching the specific skills of our volunteer attorneys and professionals, and forging connections to help our clients get the results they want.
Our interns/externs come from diverse backgrounds, each bringing unique skills and ambitions that collectively help the VLPA to better accomplish its goals while also nurturing the legal education of our interns/externs. Some of our previous interns/externs came from backgrounds in music publishing, talent buying, and even record label management.
Maggie Hunt, a 2L at Belmont University College of Law, said that the most appealing aspect of working with the VLPA was the opportunity to “apply the legal principles I had learned about in the classroom and apply them to real client situations.” Maggie also really enjoyed working with both clients and volunteers, saying that this helped her gain practical knowledge about the legal profession that she ca take with her anywhere.
Nathaniel Hobbs, a 2L at Belmont University College of Law, worked remotely for a majority of his semester with the VLPA. “Despite the challenges being a remote intern/externs posed, it was actually really helpful to have to forge my own work and stay in touch with everyone at the office regarding our ongoing projects.” One of his favorite experiences was drafting incorporation documents for a new non-profit as well as conducting client-intake calls. “I was taking a contract drafting class at the time, so it helped a lot to be able to translate what I learned in class directly to the real world. And there’s a surprising amount of public relations work involved in the process of speaking with clients and volunteers, which isn’t exactly what I expected to practice this semester but is certainly welcome.”
If you are a law student looking for a valuable internship/extern experience in a creative industry like music, film, culinary arts, cultural education, and so many more, we encourage you to apply for one of our internship/externship programs today!
“I would highly recommend spending a semester with the VLPA, as there are numerous opportunities to law students to develop their legal skills in practical applications of the law. Additionally, the Arts & Business Council staff members are all very kind, helpful, and fun to work with!” –Maggie Hunt, Fall 2020
“It’s been such a valuable experience and helped me to practice so many different elements of legal practice, all in a few short months. Everybody I have worked with has been kind, supportive, and clearly wants me to succeed beyond my internship with the VLPA, and I’ve been provided with so many opportunities to practice and grow to make sure that happens.” –Nathaniel Hobbs, Fall 2020