Municipality of Anchorage Law School Student Intern Program
The Municipality of Anchorage (MOA), Department of Law offers a wide variety of legal experiences in both civil and criminal areas. The Department of Law includes 29 attorneys in its civil and criminal divisions. The Anchorage Assembly is the legislative branch of the MOA and is served by both the Department of Law and the Assembly Counsel's Office. The Assembly Counsel's Office is staffed by 1 attorney and 1 legal assistant.
The Municipality of Anchorage accepts law student interns year-round. The Municipality accepts volunteers (including grant recipients), qualified externs, and cooperates with law school co-op programs.
The Civil Division offers experience in a broad range of litigation and non-litigation areas. Litigation topics include administrative law, torts and personal injury, contracts (construction, services, grants, goods/services), real estate (foreclosure, abatement, condemnation), elections, civil rights (police excessive force, discrimination, other Section 1983 claims), and labor and employment. Non-Litigation topics include contract drafting and negotiation, real estate (conveyances, contracts), elections (initiative, referendum, recall, ballots), environmental, local government (executive, legislative, regulatory, permits, alcohol, transportation, police/fire/health, budgets, ethics, finance, public records, purchasing, schools, service areas, taxation), and land use regulation (zoning, platting, variance, non-conforming, code enforcement, planning).
Legal intern duties include detailed research and writing assignments on a very wide range of litigation & non-litigation topics. Interns accompany attorneys to court, depositions, mediations, strategy meetings, and are involved in researching legal issues and writing at every level of adjudication, ordinance drafting, and negotiation deals.
The Criminal Division is responsible for prosecuting misdemeanors, including municipal traffic violations, driving under the influence, domestic violence and assault, and therapeutic courts. Criminal Division interns are certified for, and spend time daily in, the courtroom.
Legal interns are permitted to practice in court under Alaska Bar Rule 44, which requires half of law school coursework to be completed by the time of internship (i.e., 2L completed). Permitted interns are in court daily prosecuting misdemeanors. Interns are encouraged to conduct or assist in jury trials. (Research and writing internships may also be available in the Criminal Division for qualified 1L candidates.) A driver's license is a plus, but not an absolute requirement.
The Assembly Counsel's Office is responsible for providing legal advice to the Anchorage Assembly and its individual members in their official capacities, and assists the Municipal Clerk's Office with legal and procedural issues. Assembly Counsel attends the regular and special meetings of the Assembly and Assembly committee meetings upon request; assists Assembly members with drafting ordinances, resolutions, and memoranda, and other documents; and provides opinions regarding legal issues in legislative, administrative, and quasi-judicial matters. Subject areas include open/public meetings, ethics, elections, alcohol and liquor licensing, marijuana licensing, local government structure and powers, service area, administrative law, parliamentary procedure, and any topic within a home rule municipality's legislative powers.
Legal interns duties include detailed research and writing assignments on a very wide range of topics related to proposed municipal ordinance and resolutions, or memorandum opinions. Interns work closely with the Municipal Clerk and Assembly Counsel. Interns are expected to attend evening Assembly Meetings and legislative work sessions, as well as committee meetings. They accompany attorneys to strategy meetings and are involved in researching legal issues and writing at every level of adjudication, ordinance drafting, and negotiation deals. Preference will be given to applicants with knowledge and skill in American Sign Language.
How to Apply
In the spirit of diversity and inclusivity that characterizes Anchorage, the MOA welcomes intern candidates of all different backgrounds.
All internships are unpaid. Internships are full-time for at least 10 weeks, and include a police ride-a-long. All Municipal intern positions require a criminal background check. Assembly interns are required to attend all Anchorage Assembly meetings which are held alternate Tuesday evenings. Civil Division interns are required to attend at least one Anchorage Assembly Meeting of their choosing during their internship.
For summer positions, applications are due by February 1. Late applications will be considered if positions remain unfilled.
To apply, please submit the following as PDF files attached to an email: a cover letter (indicating preference for Civil or Criminal, or Assembly division), resume, short writing sample, and most current law school & undergraduate transcripts (unofficial is acceptable for both). Send materials to Monica Elkinton, Legal Intern Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.