Criminal Prosecution Practicum (Spring Term)
This is a full-year course. Full credit is awarded upon completion of both fall and spring sections, no credit will be awarded until the completion of both. For determining full-time status each semester, equivalency is one-half of the total course credits.
The Office of the District Attorney of Allegheny County administers the Criminal Prosecution Practicum. The practicum runs the full school year, so those interested must devote both semesters to the program. The practicum combines classroom instruction with practical criminal prosecution experience in order to prepare students for the practice of criminal law. Students attend a two (2) hour class once a week in one of the criminal courtrooms of the Allegheny County Courthouse. Students also work in the District Attorney’s Office. Students must complete 104 hours of work in the Office.
Classroom instruction involves criminal defense and prosecution issues and practical exercises. In short, it is a broad overview of the criminal justice system. Criminal defense attorneys, prosecutors working in County, State, and Federal Offices, and guest lecturers will instruct students.
Students acquire practical experience by working on a variety of cases at every level of the criminal prosecution process. During the first term, students are rotated through various sections/units of the DA’s Office. The goal of the first term is to give students a broad overview of the inner workings of a prosecution office. During the second term, students complete their required hours in a specific unit.