Children and Youth Advocacy Clinic

Information for Students

What’s Unique about CAYAC?

CAYAC allows students to represent clients in cases using a full range of advocacy skills. Students will interview and counsel clients, develop facts through informal and formal discovery, draft, file and serve civil pleadings, and appear in court.

Substantive Practice Area:

  • Motions designed to secure a child’s right to counsel in child welfare proceedings
  • Motions designed to secure extended foster care to prevent homelessness for youth aging out of foster care
  • Establishing the underlying orders required to obtain Special Immigrant Juvenile Status for undocumented, unaccompanied youth
  • Emancipations and other civil actions on behalf of youth experiencing homelessness

Skills Focus

  • Client interviewing and counseling, working primarily with adolescents
  • Learning to work cross-culturally and with interpreters
  • Legal and non-legal problem-solving
  • Drafting pleadings
  • Court Appearances—both motion practice and evidentiary hearings

Success Stories

In the past few years CAYAC students have provided valuable service for their clients. Here are just a few examples of what CAYAC students have accomplished:

  • succeeded in motions requiring the provision of extended foster care for several youth, over the objection of the state, and by doing so have helped these young people remain in school and avoid homelessness.
  • secured the predicate orders for several undocumented youth from Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico and El Salvador who have subsequently achieved legal permanency residency status.
  • brought several motions for appointment of counsel for children and youth in foster care, resulting in appointment for some children and in the only appellate opinion reversing the decision of a trial court’s refusal to appoint.
  • assisted youth experiencing homelessness with achieving emancipation, thereby allowing them to secure leased housing.
  • In Their Own Words

    Learn more about how CAYAC has shaped our alumni’s experience after law school as they share in their own worlds.

    • Andrea Freimuth, Class of 2005: Parent’s attorney, child’s attorney, state’s attorney. Andrea has seen the practice from all sides. Learn how CAYAC helped to launch her trial practice.
    • Luke Wickham, Class of 2007: Whether as a youth advocate or a legislative staffer, Luke explains how CAYAC taught him the critical skill of listening as well as how to think through ethical problems.
    • Maren Anderson, Class of 2008: In her career as a tribal attorney, Maren has appreciated the problem-solving skills she learned as a CAYAC student.
    • Janet Gwilym, Class of 2012: Janet describes how CAYAC gave her the chance to do the immigration work she wanted as a law student and how CAYAC continues to be an important part of her immigration practice.

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