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Vermont Law and Graduate School Seeks Journalists for 2023 Summer Animal Law Media Fellowships  

A VSE MAPP Graduate Students feeds a baby calf



Vermont Law and Graduate School (VLGS), home to one of the top-ranked environmental law programs in the United States and fastest growing animal law and policy programs in the world, seeks applications from qualified journalists for its 2023 Summer Media Fellowships.  

Animal Law Media Fellowships are open to journalists covering issues related to animal law and policy, including food and agriculture, factory farming and farm animal welfare. Selected journalists will participate in the VLGS summer session, taught by internationally recognized scholars and leaders. While on campus, fellows will interact with experts in environmental and animal law and policy, forming connections that provide sources for stories and often evolve into years-long professional relationships.  

Past fellow Claire Brown shared, "Attending Vermont Law School this summer was immensely educational. It's so rare to have the opportunity to spend two weeks burrowing into a single topic, and it was a huge privilege to do so in the idyllic surroundings of South Royalton. In addition to attending class, I had the chance to connect with law school faculty, all of whom are doing exciting research relevant to my beat. I would recommend this fellowship for anyone reporting on animals and agriculture.” 

Fellows are selected based on work history and samples, commitment to covering animal agriculture law and policy, and their potential for increasing the public’s understanding of farm animal law and policy topics. Fellows will choose to audit a course from VLGS’s summer animal law and policy courses. One applicant will be selected to participate in courses focused on either Animal Welfare Law (June 20-29) or The Farm Bill (July 24-August 3). Another applicant will be selected to participate in the Undercover Investigations of Animal Operations intensive (June 1-4). The two selected fellows will receive a stipend ($500-$1250), free housing and books, assistance with travel and a tuition waiver.  

“Vermont Law and Graduate School has been offering summer animal law courses for over three decades,” noted Professor Delci Winders, director of VLGS’s Animal Law and Policy Institute. “We are thrilled to continue welcoming Animal Law Media Fellows into the program to learn more about these cutting-edge issues while we all build important relationships.” 

In addition to attending class, fellows participate in the Summer Session’s “Hot Topics” series, delivering a 45-minute, informal lecture on the topic of their choice. Past presentations have included inhumane ventilation shut-down practices, harmful algal blooms caused by animal agriculture, and the problematic state of farmed animal protection in Canada. 

Every summer since 2002, Vermont Law and Graduate School has invited journalists to participate in a range of environmental media fellowships. This year, thanks to the generous funding from the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®), the school will offer additional media fellowships focused on animal law for the third summer in a row.   

“The ASPCA is delighted to fund another year of Animal Law Media Fellowships at Vermont Law and Graduate School,” said Kara Shannon, director, farm animal welfare policy for the ASPCA. “Journalists play a critical role in educating the public on the realities of our inhumane factory farming system and this fellowship equips them with the knowledge they need to shed light on the complex legal framework that allows agribusiness to maintain the status quo at the expense of billions of animals.”   

Prospective fellows may submit their application online until Monday, March 20, 2023 at 5:00 p.m. ET. For more information, please visit or contact Laura Ireland, Associate Director of the Animal Law and Policy Institute at Vermont Law at Graduate School, at