The CLEC: Experience, Assistance & Impact for Law Students

The Clinical Legal Education Center (CLEC) at the Hebrew University is an integral part of Israel’s foremost Faculty of Law and one of the country’s leading clinical centers. The CLEC combines a unique approach to academic studies with practical work advocating for the most vulnerable populations is Israeli society.

Alongside helping individuals to protect their rights (pro bono), the Clinic aims to arm students – the future generation of lawyers in the public and private sectors – with social sensitivity and an understanding of the relationship between law ‘on the books’ and 'law in action'. Participants undertake a variety of tasks, all of which are carried out under the close supervision of the Clinic’s attorneys, which combine representation of individual clients with work towards general policy-change promoting their rights.

CLEC activities are thus based on a two-fold approach which offers the highest quality legal aid to a wide range of disadvantaged individuals and groups while engaging law students in top-notch, hands-on clinical and practical experience. Law students experience practical legal work and attend forums and workshops that provide them with the legal tools essential for effectively performing their pro bono activities. Alongside, Faculty members help these students understand and gain insights on the social, cultural, and ethical dimensions of their future profession, while the students also benefit from interaction with professionals in other disciplines, including social work, business administration and disability studies. This high investment in our students has proven well worth it — indeed, as they pursue their careers, a majority of our students remain committed to, and aware of, social responsibility as an integral part of the legal profession. 

The CLEC comprises 9 clinics: The Representation of Marginalized Population Groups Clinic; the Criminal Justice Clinic; the International Human Rights Clinic; the Rights of People with Disability Clinic; the Children and Youth Rights Clinic; the Economic Development of Women Clinic; the Innocence Clinic; the Multiculturalism and Diversity Clinic; and a "Mini Clinic" for International Trade Conflict Resolution. 

Every year app.140 students, Israel’s future legal leaders, are accepted to the various clinics. They are supervised by12 clinical staff members –  attorneys specializing in various fields of law – alongside eight academic staff members, who work with the CLEC to promote these goals.