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Activities and Program Components

The following activities associated with the Scholars program are coordinated by the Executive Director of the Gates PSL Program. Participation in all of these events is required for all Scholars.

Annual Retreat

In September of each year, Scholars participate in a retreat.


The Gates PSL Program will offer non-credit seminars throughout the academic year. A wide spectrum of legal and other professionals who are engaged in public service are invited to discuss their careers and activities, as well as pressing issues in public interest practice. These seminars are open to all students, including recipients of similar scholarships at Gonzaga and Seattle University, but are required for Gates PSL Scholars. Other students from University of Washington schools and colleges as well as the larger community may also be invited as appropriate.

Speaker Series

The Gates PSL Program will feature talks by individuals engaged in public service.  The purpose of this series is to introduce the law school community and others outside the law school to information about the many ways attorneys can serve the public good.  Speakers will come from a range of different backgrounds and areas of expertise and will engage our community in a conversation about the meaning of public service.

Scholar Meetings

Scholars participate in regular Scholars’ meetings as called by the Director designed to provide an opportunity for community among the Scholars and to keep scholars informed and current on Program requirements and events.


Two internships are required. In the summer after their first year, Gates PSL Scholars complete a ten-week summer internship. This internship, supported by a stipend, enables students to integrate the practical experience of full-time work at a government agency or public interest law organization with his or her formal legal training. A second internship is required either during the second or third school year or during the second summer.

Pre-requisites for Internships
Before beginning their internship, students are required to demonstrate a basic understanding of public interest issues and practice by certifying completion of the following by April 15:

  • Attendance at Gates PSL Scholars’ seminars.
  • Attendance at the Public Interest Career Fair.
  • Attendance and volunteering at the Public Interest Law Association("PILA") Auction. Scholars are required to work on the PILA Auction by canvassing (soliciting donations) or some other duty assigned by the committee and working the night of the Auction.
  • Regular attendance at Scholars’ Meetings.

Scholar Mentoring

Scholars are provided with individual mentoring on both a scheduled basis and as needed basis to ensure they are on track with program requirements.

Job Placement

Assistance in finding public service employment is provided by the Gates Public Service Law Executive Director and the Center for Career and Leadership Development.


Program administrators produce a general publication at the end of each quarter to highlight current and past Scholars and the program activities of the previous quarter.

Program administrators also produce a summer newsletter to maintain contact with Scholars and to keep them informed about the upcoming year.

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