Student Opportunities in Environmental Law

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Educational Opportunities

Carolina Law provides many benefits for students interested in pursuing studies in environmental law. The school offers a range of core and specialty classes, and has a cadre of cutting edge classes such as Carbon Trading and Climate Change law. A class in Interagency Environmental Cooperation allows students to work on real environmental issues in administrative agencies with the agency personnel themselves. Through a joint agreement with Duke Law School, UNC students can take specilaty environmental law classes offered at Duke, if they are not available at UNC. We also have semester long externships in Washington D.C. and around the country that are associated with environmental agencies and public interest law firms such as the Southern Environmental Law Center. Additionally, CE3 provides environmental law students with opportunities to conduct paid research on some of the most important environmental law issues of the day, and is linked with other environmental disciplines across campus and environmental projects around the country.


CE3 offers a full tuition scholarship for all three years to a student with a demonstrated interest in the climate, energy and/or environmental law fields.  In addition to tuition, the scholarship provides guaranteed summer jobs for both the 1L and 2L summers, should the student be interested.

Courses in Environmental Law

See Environmental Law courses available at Carolina Law, along with faculty suggestions. View a listing of all climate change courses available at UNC-Chapel Hill.

Student Organizations

Students interested in environmental law can also join the student-run Environmental Law Project, which not only brings together students interested in environmental law, but also undertakes recycling projects and works with the environmental law faculty to publish pieces in the materials accompanying the state of North Carolina's largest environmental law CLE. A full list of authors and links to papers written for the Environmental Law Symposium, including archives, are available on ELP's Symposium website.

Pro Bono Opportunities

UNC students can join the Weatherization Working Group, a pro bono project run by students and Professor Maria Savasta-Kennedy, working with the town of Chapel Hill to design a program to weatherize the town's low-income public housing. The group hopes to design a prototype weatherization program for small towns across the country. Moreover, this to be one of several projects providing students with the opportunity to apply their classroom experience to real world environmental problems, particularly those problems with climate change adaptation, that are the focus of CE3.

Summer Opportunities

UNC Law students may also receive priority for Seattle University's Summer in Alaska Program. This program includes 8 weeks in Anchorage, where students take the class Alaska Natives and Environmental Law for Credit, and can also work in supervised legal placements. This is the only law school course taught in Alaska. It addresses the interaction between the environment, energy, and Alaska Native's legal status, and is co-taught by professor Victor B. Flatt, the Tom & Elizabeth Distinguished Professor of Environmental Law and Director of the Center for Law, Environment, Adaptation, and Resources (CE3) at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. Interested students should contact Professor Flatt.

Professional Opportunities

The Triangle area is home to law firms with environmental law specialties, environmental public interest firms, state environmental agencies, and the US EPA's national air research laboratory.

UNC School of Law | Van Hecke-Wettach Hall | 160 Ridge Road, CB #3380 | Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3380 | 919.962.5106 | Accessibility

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