Law Students

What is the SEC Student Honors Program and Why Should You Apply? 
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Summary: SEC Student Honors Program is specifically designed to familiarize students with the regulation of securities markets

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) offers a robust Student Honors Program specifically designed to teach students about the regulation of securities markets by allowing them to work directly on projects that uphold the SEC’S mission. 

The SEC Student Honors Program is a specialized ten-week externship for undergraduate, graduate, and law students. Students work with SEC staff members on assignments covering a wide range of the SEC’s mission such as assisting in the litigation of enforcement actions and drafting proposed statutes and rules.


Students often find SEC staff members to be professional mentors who help them with research and writing projects and provide guidance on career development. 

Through agency-wide meetings and broadcasts, I became acquainted with the Commission’s various divisions and their functions. Though I worked specifically within the Enforcement Division, it was fascinating to learn about the different responsibilities of the Corporation Finance, Economic and Risk Analysis, Investment Management, and Trading and Markets divisions.’ writes a Monica Kwok, J.D for

As a part of their service at the SEC, students are invited to attend training workshops, commission meetings, and various seminars.

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The selected students are assigned to one of the divisions of the SEC headquarters in Washington, D.C. and/or 11 other regional offices. In the regional offices, the students in most cases are assigned to either the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations or the Division of Enforcement.

‘I was also fortunate enough to work directly with several fantastic attorneys, all of whom provided excellent guidance and professional mentorship. It was incredible to learn about their unique career trajectories, as they each hailed from vastly different fields of law. This experience has transformed the ways in which I think about current events, particularly in the financial regulation space. With my remaining time at Harvard Law School, I hope to further explore the intersection of regulatory policies and proceedings and corporate criminality through related coursework and research projects.’ writes Kwok on her experience in the program. 

Throughout the program, students have the opportunity to engage in roundtable discussions and a mentor program that provides detailed information and guidance on securities laws and regulations.

To apply for the program students should submit a resume, a one-page cover letter, an official school transcript, a list of current courses, and a 5- to 10-page writing sample.

Academic achievement, writing skills, experience, ability to reason independently, creative extracurricular activities, and a well-rounded background are some of the deciding factors in the selection process. 

The SEC offers bright, creative, results-oriented students a lot of responsibilities and opportunities to enhance their legal careers.



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