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Legal Externship Program 2022 Highlights

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Sturm College of Law

Article  •
Downtown Denver Colorado

Denver Law’s Legal Externship Program continues to expand: across three semesters, we hosted 646 total externships. We fostered opportunities across practice settings, with 53% of placements classified as public sector, and 47% as private. Forty-one percent of all externships were paid – our highest percentage to date. An additional 7% of externs, all of whom were working unpaid in the public sector during summer 2022, received a stipend from the University of Denver. Finally, we continued to see a strong connection between externships and post-graduate employment. Consistent with prior years, over 25% of Class of 2021 graduates were hired directly by a former externship site upon graduation.

Our program takes great pride in supporting all students and in finding ways to elevate groups and opportunities that can benefit from additional attention. For example, to promote public sector work and pro bono, we launched a Public Interest in Practice series, aiming to showcase success stories in the courts, the legislature, and beyond. Featuring lawyers, organizers, and others, we highlighted strategies and tactics for advocacy in Colorado around bail reform, immigration defense, eviction and housing legislation, and progressive prosecution. To recognize the financial challenges associated with legal education and externships specifically, in partnership with our Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, for the fall and spring semesters, we offered parking stipends to unpaid externs, helping to alleviate costs. Finally, to best support our part-time program, we created an online-only seminar for first-time externs that can run any semester, allowing these busy students to participate in our program.

Sadly, we said goodbye to Visiting Assistant Professor of the Practice LaQunya Baker, who was appointed by Governor Jared Polis to the Arapahoe County Court bench. We look forward to welcoming back Judge Baker as an adjunct professor sometime in the future.

We are proud of our extensive externship opportunities at Denver Law and look forward to another impactful year.

Externship Program Faculty Highlights

Alexi Freeman

Professor of the Practice
Director of Legal Externship Program
Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Awards & Appointments

  • Outstanding Mentor, 2021-2022, Student Bar Association
  • Outstanding Administrator Award, 2021-2022, Student Bar Association


  • Presenter, Critical Race Theory, Fort Collins City Attorney’s Office (June 14, 2022).
  • Presenter, Externship Supervisor CLE, University of Denver Sturm College of Law (May 2022).
  • Invited Lecturer, Critical Race Theory, Symposium on Race (April 6, 2022).
  • Invited Presenter, Teaching Justice and Equity Through Externships, 2021 CLEA Teaching Justice Series (April 1, 2022).
  • Invited Lecturer, Race and Education, Civil Rights Summit 2022 (March 12, 2022).
  • Presenter, Critical Race Perspectives on Gender, Identity, and Culture in the Law, Denver Law Review Symposium (March 12, 2022).
  • Invited Keynote, Critical Race Theory 101, Center for Legal Inclusiveness (Feb. 16, 2022).
  • Invited Panelist, Black Lawyers for Black People: How Black Lawyers Can Utilize Their Legal Training to Do Significant, Meaningful Work and Contribute to the Uplift of the Black Community, 17th Annual Black Pre-Law Conference (Nov. 16, 2021).
  • Presenter, Returning to Work with a DEI Lens, Denver Law DEI Office (Nov. 15, 2021).
  • Invited Panelist, Critical Race Theory, Iliff School of Theology and The Institute for Religion Politics and Culture (Nov. 4, 2021).
  • Invited Panelist, The Value of Externships, Faculty of Federal Advocates (Sept. 23, 2021).

Colleen Scarola
Visiting Assistant Professor of the Practice 


  • Presenter, Effective Legal Writing CLE, Sinars Slowikowski Tomaska (September 2022).
  • Presenter, Leaning Out as an Integrated Reflective Practice, Association of American Law Schools (AALS) 2022 Clinical Conference (May 2022).
  • Presenter, Externship Supervisor CLE, University of Denver Sturm College of Law (May 2022).