Samuel L. Greenebaum Public Service Program

The University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law is committed to training thoughtful, civic-minded lawyers who play active roles in their communities. This commitment was exemplified when UofL Law became one of the first five law schools in the country to adopt a public service requirement into the standard curriculum.

The Samuel L. Greenebaum Public Service Program began in the Spring of 1992 as a volunteer program and became a required component of the curriculum in 1994. The program is funded through an endowment created by Richard and Jane Eskind and John S. Greenebaum to honor the spirit of public service exemplified by their father, the late Samuel L. Greenebaum, a Louisville legal and civic leader.

The Samuel L. Greenebaum Public Service Program gives students the opportunity to develop skills working with real clients and real legal issues. With appropriate supervision, students perform law-related tasks such as research, writing, client interviews, policy analysis, document preparation and in-court assistance. We maintain over 90 placements and continually add new placements to offer a diverse selection, such as legal aid offices, public defender offices, nonprofit public service organizations, government agencies, court system projects, or advocacy groups.  Before an agency can be added as a placement with our program, the agency must meet the following definition:

Definition of Public Service

For purposes of the Public Service Program, public service work is broadly defined as follows:

• Primarily, for persons of limited means or for charitable, religious, civic, community, governmental and educational organizations in matters which are designed generally to address the needs of persons of limited means and for governmental organizations in matters in furtherance of their organizational purposes.

• Secondarily, for groups or organizations seeking to secure or protect civil rights, civil liberties, animals, the environment, or public rights; or

• In special cases (not routine clerk work), in activities for improving the law, the legal system or the legal profession, or educating the public about the law and the legal system.

Furthermore, the volunteer service must be unpaid, not for academic credit, and law-related work at an approved placement.

No public service work credit will be received by a student who is currently in a paid employment relationship with the placement.

Students are required to perform a minimum of thirty-hours of law-related public service. Each year more than 4,000 hours of legal assistance is donated to local, state and national communities.