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A Roundtable Series for Environmental Law Faculty on the Future of Legal Education

With environmental challenges expanding in urgency and complexity, the role of a legal education has never been so important. Yet, according to Principles for Legal Education and Licensure in the 21st Century, a 2020 report from the American Bar Association, "Our established system of legal education and licensure is preparing the next generation of legal professionals for yesterday rather than for tomorrow . . . for a world that will not exist sooner than we might like to imagine."

How can environmental law programs best prepare students to meet the challenges of the future? What should an environmental law curriculum look like in the upcoming decades? Which professional fields are growing? And what skills will students need to be well-suited for these positions?

Join Vermont Law School’s Environmental Law Center and colleagues from across the country for a continuation of our 2019 Emerging Environmental Law Curriculum Conference. This virtual roundtable series will expand on the issues explored in 2019, as well as dive into new discussions of innovation in and out of the classroom. Each event will address a different phase of student development: from in-class doctrinal courses, to creative and critical thinking skills, to clinical and experiential work. We will also discuss how, if at all, the environmental law community can address the Principles for Legal Education and Licensure in the 21st Century as outlined by the ABA.

With discussions led by Vermont Law School Associate Dean for Environmental Programs Jenny Rushlow and Professor of Law Jonathan Rosenbloom, the roundtables will feature faculty panelists from law schools around the U.S. Join us to hear from scholars who are shaping the future of environmental law education, and stay for an engaging discussion so we can learn from you. We encourage you to register for all events in the series; see details below.

Roundtable 1: The Essential Environmental Curriculum

What courses should law schools be offering for the next generation of environmental lawyers? What do administrators and faculty members need to know about emerging environmental law to shape curricular decisions? This session will explore the issues a modern curriculum should include to give students a fundamental understanding of environmental law today.

Elizabeth Kronk Warner, Dean and Professor of Law, S.J. Quinney College of Law, University of Utah
Keith Hirokawa, Professor of Law, Albany Law School 
Steph Tai, Professor of Law, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Date/time: Thursday, January 28, 2021, from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m. EST

Register here »


Roundtable 2: New Techniques in the Classroom and Beyond

What pedagogical decisions should faculty consider in light of an evolving environmental law curriculum? What materials will be and are relevant for the future and how should those materials be explored in and out of the classroom? What role will technology play? How can we incorporate opportunities for field study and problem-based learning? This session will explore ideas beyond traditional lectures to engage students in new and innovative ways.

Lincoln Davies, Dean and Frank R. Strong Chair in Law, Ohio State University Moritz College of Law
Karrigan Bork, Acting Professor of Law, UC Davis School of Law
Sarah Krakoff, Moses Laskey Professor of Law, University of Colorado

Date/time: Thursday, February 25, 2021, from 3 to 4:15 p.m. EST

Register here »


Roundtable 3: Preparing for Environmental Practice

What skills will the next generation of environmental lawyers need to be prepared to practice? What is the role of clinics and experiential learning? Are there new strategies to addressing emerging environmental issues? This session examines how we can continue to prepare students for their careers beyond law school.

Hari Osofsky, Dean, Penn State Law and the Penn State School of International Affairs
Cale Jaffe, Director, Environmental and Regulatory Law Clinic, University of Virginia School of Law
Helen Kang, Professor of Law, Director, Environmental Law and Justice Clinic, Golden Gate University

Date/time: Thursday, March 25, 2021, from 3 to 4:15 p.m. EST

Register here »