Westchester County District Attorney’s Office Intern, White Plains, NY
Considering a J.D. degree? Working in the district attorney’s office could help you figure out your true passion. Or maybe you think you want to be a lawyer, but you have no idea what really happens in a hearing or the courtroom—besides what you see in the movies. By getting a sneak peek into the mechanics of the criminal justice system, you can narrow down the type of law you’d like to practice—or whether you’d like to practice at all.
What it’s actually like
The everyday tasks you’ll be assigned include working on writing legal memos and search warrants. Less frequently, you’ll be given the opportunity to shadow assistant district attorneys while they go about their daily routine.
Cool stuff you get to do
When shadowing the ADAs, you get to sit in the courtroom with them and experience the trials firsthand. What better way to learn about the criminal justice system than by witnessing it in action?
What you’ll learn
“I learned a lot, to say the least. Ranging from how judges, assistant district attorneys, defense attorneys and the accused interact with one another, to how a courtroom functioned, to punishment sanctions,” former intern Nicholas Kryza said. “I could go on and on, but it’s definitely the best hands on experience I’ve had up to this point.”
How to prepare for your application
You need to write a resume, if you don’t already have one. Craft a compelling cover letter explaining why you want the internship and why the DA should choose you. In that letter, make sure you accurately express your interest in the criminal justice system, and explain specifically what you hope to walk away with at the end of the program.
Skills that impress them
Any resume items that reflect your leadership and commitment skills are incredibly helpful. Make sure you highlight them in your application.
“The biggest thing I walked away with was confidence,” Kryza said. The Assistant District Attorneys will treat you as an equal. Having professionals rely on you for their own success feels like a lot of responsibility—and it is. Put in the effort and it’ll pay off when you see your hard work come to fruition right there in that courtroom.
- Spring semester is from January to May, summer semester is from June to July/August, and the fall semester is from September to December
- Spring applications due by December 1, summer applications due by February 1, fall applications due by August 1