Graduate Law Clerk Program
The Graduate Law Clerk Program of the San Diego District Attorney’s Office affords individuals who have taken the California Bar examination the opportunity to work for a prosecutor’s office while awaiting California Bar results. Employment in this position would start in August 2017. The Graduate Law Clerk Program offers full time, paid positions, and Graduate Law Clerks will be expected to work at least 40 hours a week.
Graduate Law Clerks are assigned to all divisions of the Office within San Diego County. They may be assigned to answer defense motions, do legal research and write reports thereon, and assist attorneys in trial preparation. If certified, they have the opportunity to conduct felony preliminary hearings and misdemeanor jury trials under the supervision of Deputy District Attorneys.
Because San Diego is a civil service county, employment as a Deputy District Attorney is by competitive application and interviewing after the Graduate Law Clerk has passed the California Bar examination. Temporary employment as a Graduate Law Clerk is NOT a guarantee or promise of employment as a Deputy District Attorney I. Graduate Law Clerks can be employed for no longer than a year. If a Graduate Law Clerk has passed the California Bar, he or she can apply for a position as a Deputy District Attorney during open recruitment for that position.
Every Graduate Law Clerk participates in an introductory training course before being assigned into a particular division. Experienced trial deputies administer this training to familiarize Graduate Law Clerks with the California criminal justice process and our Office. After the initial training, each Graduate Law Clerk will receive on the job mentorship from an experienced prosecutor who will provide relevant training for each assignment.
All Graduate Law Clerks are expected to apply with the State Bar for their certification. Such certification status allows these then Certified Graduate Law Clerks to research, write, and argue motions, conduct preliminary hearings, assist in the preparation of serious felony cases and may even be assigned to assist with some aspects of case preparation in rape, kidnap and murder trials.
Graduate Law Clerk Application Process
The requirements for the Graduate Law Clerk positions are as follows:
- 3L Status
- Commitment to taking the California Bar examination in July 2017
- Resume, cover letter and transcript
- Writing Sample (not to exceed three typed pages)
- Grade Point Average of 3.0
- 2 Letters of Recommendation (Please provide 2 only)
- Subject to background and medical clearance
- If you have worked for our Office before, please include in your application the names of any supervisors to whom you have previously been assigned or other DDAs who can speak to your work.
Selection for the Graduate Law Clerk position consists of a review of the individual’s cover letter, resume, writing sample, letters of recommendation and transcript. After the written application materials have been reviewed, some applicants will be scheduled for a personal interview.
For the Graduate Law Clerk position, interviewing will take place either through Skype/teleconferencing or in person at the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office in mid-October 2016.
To apply for the Graduate Law Clerk position, please submit a (1) Cover Letter, (2) Resume, (3) Writing Sample (not to exceed three typed pages), (4) Two Letters of Recommendation, (5) Official or Unofficial Transcript, and (6) only if you have previously worked for the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office, the names of any supervisors to whom you have previously been assigned or other DDAs from our Office who can speak to your work. Please submit the materials as a SINGLE PDF through email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The applications are due on October 7, 2016.
Frank Jackson and Melissa Diaz, Hiring Deputies – Graduate Law Clerk Program
Office of the District Attorney
330 W. Broadway, Suite 940
San Diego, CA 92101