Aliza Shatzman (Legal Accountability Project) has published “The Clerkships Whisper Network: What It Is, Why It’s Broken, and How to Fix It”, in the Colum. L. Rev.Forum.
Here is the opening paragraph (citations and links omitted):
You want to clerk? Great. How will you avoid judges who harass their clerks? Some students say, “I’d ask someone.” But who are you going to ask? Clerkship directors tell students to “do their research.” But what research are you going to do when so little information about judges is available on an equitable basis? I posed this question to Columbia Law students on November 17, 2022, at an event with my nonprofit, The Legal Accountability Project (LAP). I launched LAP in late spring 2022 to correct both the lack of transparency in the clerkship application process and the lack of accountability for judges who mistreat their clerks—injustices that I personally experienced as a law student and law clerk. I now speak with law students and administrators to share LAP’s mission of ensuring positive clerkship experiences while extending support and resources to law clerks who do not have positive experiences. . I do not dissuade anyone from clerking —in fact, clerking is an excellent option for many new attorneys. But both law students and law schools should prioritize positive clerkship experiences over the prestige of clerkships or number of clerkship placements, period—a balance that some law schools have historically struggled to strike. Furthermore, clerkship applicants must be intentional about identifying judges who create positive work environments. Under the current clerkship regime, many law students lack access to critical information. Better, more transparent processes are necessary.
The full piece is available here.