Liberal Arts Career Services
Liberal Arts Career Services

Texas Office of the Attorney General

Spring 2018

Position: Intern in the Appeals and Legal Counsel Section
Student: IRG Senior

This semester, I interned for the Office of the Attorney General of Texas, Crime Victim Services Division. I was specifically working in the Crime Victims Compensation (CVC) Program, Legal Section. The CVC Program allows victims of violent crime to apply for monetary compensation accrued in the process of a violent crime. Common forms of violent crime include assault, homicide, sexual assault, family violence, elder abuse, child abuse and sexual harassment of a minor. The CVC Program is divided into sections including Intake, Legal and Awards. The Intake Section reviews every application that is sent to the CVC Program and decides if the applicant truly is a victim of crime and can be compensated for the costs accumulated as a result of the crime. If they decide to approve the application, it is then sent to the Awards Section, where reviewers determine how the applicants can be compensated. This can include hospital bills, counseling bills, funeral expenses, relocation costs, loss of earnings, damage to property, and more. The Intake Section can also deny applications, and if this occurs, applicants are allowed to appeal the decision. If an appeal is made, the application is sent to the Legal Section, where I interned. The Legal Section is responsible for reviewing applications at a more extensive level, contacting detectives, hospitals, district attorney offices and victims to gain a complete understanding of the incident and to see if further law enforcement investigation has taken place.

My role as an intern in the Legal Section was reviewing sexual assault, aggravated assault and homicide applications that were appealed by the applicants. My day-to-day responsibilities included reading through victim applications, police reports, hospital bills, etc., and making calls to detectives and district attorney offices to determine if applicants were truly victims of crime. I worked closely with the investigator at the office, and she helped me grow in my critical analysis skills. I also drafted the legal documents that were sent to the victims once a decision was made, drawing from the Code of Criminal Procedure and Penal Code to adequately explain why they did or did not qualify as victims of crime. I sincerely enjoyed this internship as it grew my analysis, decision-making and writing skills, helped me develop a more cohesive understanding of where I want to go next, and deeply benefitted true victims of crime.

Fall 2016  

Position: Economic Analysis Intern, Consumer Protection Division, Antitrust Section
Student: Economics Senior

There really is no official title for the undergraduate intern position at the Office of the Attorney General (OAG). The official name of the office that houses the position is the Office of the Texas Attorney General, Consumer Protection Division, Antitrust Section. The antitrust aspect of it is what makes economics majors uniquely fit and qualified for it. Antitrust law and enforcement draws on all aspects of what students learn as economics majors. This is why all of the experts and expert witnesses in the field are Ph.D. economists. Below are some classes I strongly recommend having completed before pursuing the internship, ranked from most important to more optional:

Introduction to Econometrics (ECO 341K) (and Microeconomic Theory (ECO 420K))

Antitrust Law and Economics (ECO 353K)

Industrial Organization (ECO 328)

Advanced Econometrics (ECO 348K)

The skills developed in these courses form the core of antitrust enforcement. Economics is so important to antitrust law that many firms (including the Texas OAG) have their own PhD economist on staff. This is the person with whom the economics intern interacts most, although interaction with everyone on staff is still quite frequent. The entire team at OAG is very friendly, and ready to meet new people. Indeed, they are very amicable and also great professionals, and are charged with the responsibility of ensuring the well-being of consumers across the State of Texas and suing companies who engage in anti-competitive behavior harmful to said consumers.

A typical day at OAG will include meeting with the staff economist to give and receive an update on work projects, looking for research papers on a pertinent topic, reading articles, and a lot of data work and analysis. Typically there will be a project meeting every week or two where all people working on a project will get together to discuss their progress. The position is not dry and secluded, though. There is much interaction to be had and relationships to be built. All-in-all it is a great position and opportunity for any economics major, and especially for those looking to go to law school or graduate school in economics with the intent to specialize in applied microeconomics.

 


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    University of Texas at Austin
    FAC 18
    2304 Whitis Ave. Stop G6200
    Austin, Texas 78712-1508
    512-471-7900