San Francisco Immersion Program

San Francisco Immersion Program

The San Francisco Immersion Program (SFIP) is offered to Northwestern Law JD students interested in understanding the legal and business environment of growth-stage startup firms, venture-capital and private-equity firms, and established high-tech companies.

Students selected for the program learn from both Law School and Kellogg faculty, as well as business and legal leaders in the San Francisco Bay Area. Students spend the first 10-14 weeks of the Spring semester in San Francisco taking a combination of Kellogg and Law School classes at Northwestern's San Francisco campus. The program offers both externship and non-externship options. Students with externships work three days a week in externships in legal departments of Bay-Area companies.

The San Francisco Immersion Program was one of my favorite experiences at Northwestern. We had the opportunity to learn about the legal community’s role in technology from experienced faculty while simultaneously externing at a high-tech startup in the heart of Silicon Valley."

—2018 Student


All rising second and rising third-year JD students are eligible to apply. Among other factors, students are selected based on their stated interest in experiencing high-technology or venture-capital environments, and/or appropriate externship match with a Bay-Area company, and maintaining a reasonable balance between 2L and 3L participants.


The San Francisco Immersion Program is an accredited curricular experience, and the curriculum includes both Kellogg and Law School courses, such as:

 Law School Elective Courses

  • Business and Law of Venture Deals
  • IP Strategies with Business Implications
  • Private-Equity Transactions
  • Competition Regulation: Antitrust and IP
  • Social Entrepreneurship
  • Information Privacy
  • The Business, Law and Technology of Space Commerce
  • Workshop: Space Commerce Team Project

Kellogg Elective Courses

  • Launching and Leading Start-Ups
  • Product Management for Technology Companies
  • Entrepreneurship: Building Innovation, Teams, and Cultures

Law School Required Course

  • Hi Tech Practicum (externship requirement) or Seminar

 Please note that course options may change from year to year. For more information on course offerings, contact the SFIP director.

Prior and Present Externship Companies

  • Affirm
  • Amyris
  • Angel Island Capital
  • Brex
  • Carta
  • Credit Karma
  • eBay
  • Golden Gate Capital
  • Golden State Warriors
  • Gusto
  • Hewlett-Packard
  • Impossible Foods
  • Luminar Technologies
  • Momentus Space
  • Nextdoor
  • Ouster
  • Riot Games
  • Roofstock
  • ServiceNow
  • Shipt
  • Skillz
  • Stripe
  • StubHub
  • Tesla
  • Twilio

For more information on hosting a student extern at your organization, contact the SFIP director.

The SF Immersion program has given me more insight into what it actually means to be a lawyer than any other law school experience."

—2019 Student