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Environmental Justice LLM Fellowship

 

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*This fellowship position is currently filled.

Vermont Law School's Environmental Justice (EJ) Clinic offers a two-year Environmental Justice Fellowship.

Fellowship Description

The Environmental Justice Clinic at Vermont Law School trains law and policy students in community-based lawyering on environmental justice and civil rights. The EJ Clinic provides students with opportunities to partner with and represent communities fighting racial and economic disparities in the distribution of environmental harms and seeking meaningful participation in decisions affecting their future. The clinic trains students to be ethical and effective advocates through adhering to the principles of environmental justice.

The EJ Clinic offers a two-year fellowship. The fellowship combines the opportunity to pursue an LLM degree in Environmental Law, Food and Agricultural Law, or Energy Law from one of the leading environmental law programs in the nation with the opportunity to work with the students and faculty at the EJ Clinic as part of a legal practice at the intersection of civil rights and environmental law.

Nature of the Fellowship

In addition to pursuing an LLM degree, the fellow will work part-time (at least 20 hours per week) on EJ Clinic projects. Areas of work include: fighting the disproportionate impacts of industrial agriculture, oil and gas, and waste industries on Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) and low income communities, compelling civil rights enforcement in the environmental context, and developing and supporting adoption of strong environmental justice laws.

The fellow will work closely with EJ Clinic faculty and staff, partners, clients, and students. The fellow’s responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

  • Working on EJ Clinic cases and projects to represent community-groups on issues of environmental justice. Advocacy may include litigation, administrative advocacy, public education, and work on legislation in array of contexts. 
  • Developing resources related to environmental justice for the National Agriculture Library.
  • Developing and leading Environmental Justice seminar and case rounds, under the guidance of the Clinic Director.
  • Working with and supervising EJ Clinic student clinicians.
  • Participating with the faculty and staff team in EJ Clinic planning.
  • Engaging in outreach to potential partners, case development, and representing the EJ Clinic at trainings and events.
  • Assisting the director and staff attorney in identifying grant opportunities and drafting grant proposals.

The Environmental Justice Clinic believes a diverse and inclusive workplace is essential to the success of our work, and we strive to create a safe and supportive environment that encourages racial and social equity and justice. We strongly encourage applicants from all walks of life, including but not limited to BIPOC/people of color, individuals with disabilities, LGBTQ+ candidates, and members of other marginalized communities, because we know that our work has greater impact when we center diverse backgrounds and perspectives.

All fellowship materials should be sent to admiss@vermontlaw.edu and must include a clear reference to the fellowship. Electronic submissions are preferred. If unable to send electronically, please send materials to:

Vermont Law School Admissions Office
Environmental Justice LLM Fellowship
PO Box 96
South Royalton, VT 05068

Fellowship Benefits

  • Tuition waiver for LLM in Environmental Law, Food and Agricultural Law, or Energy Law
  • $35,000 stipend per year

Fellowship Qualifications

  • JD from an ABA-accredited law school;
  • One to three years of relevant legislative, legal, or policy experience, including judicial clerkships;
  • Strong legal research, writing, interpersonal, and communications skills, including experience working with people from a diversity of backgrounds;
  • A commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion, and justice both in our workplace and in collaboration with the partners and communities we serve. Demonstrated knowledge of, or commitment to building an understanding of, racial equity;
  • Admission to the LLM in Food and Agriculture Law, Energy Law, or Environmental Law program at Vermont Law School (application for LLM admission can occur concurrently with application for EJ Clinic Fellow position); and
  • Bar membership in good standing and a willingness to join the Vermont bar as needed (can be obtained within the first year of position).

FELLOWSHIP APPLICATION

The deadline for completed LLM applications and submission of fellowship materials is July 1st. Applications will be considered on a rolling basis.

Fellowship Requirements

  • Application for LLM in Environmental Law, Energy Law, or Food and Agricultural Law

In addition to the LLM application requirements please submit the following:

  • Statement of interest specific to the fellowship (not longer than one single-spaced page);
  • Letter of recommendation specific to the fellowship; and
  • An academic writing sample of no more than five pages.

If you have any questions about the Environmental Justice Fellowship, please contact Amy Laura Cahn, Visiting Professor and Acting EJ Clinic Director, at acahn@vermontlaw.edu. For general admissions questions, please contact the admissions office at admiss@vermontlaw.edu.