Through the Center for Energy & Environmental Law (CEEL), students at the UConn School of Law have access to rich educational experiences in the growing fields of energy and environmental law. CEEL is on the vanguard of environmental and energy education — recognizing these disciplines must be combined in study and in preparing our students.
Students may also to engage in real-world, hands-on clinical training, through the CEEL externship clinic, externships with federal agencies or nationally-recognized nonprofit organizations through the Semester in DC program, and a special externship program with the State of Connecticut’s executive, legislative, and judicial branches.
Students have the opportunity to use their CEEL externship clinic experience towards a Certificate in Energy and Environmental Law. Through the certificate program, students develop substantive knowledge in energy and environmental law, as well as strengthen their analytical, lawyering, legal research, and writing skills.
Students work as policy interns for the Legislative Environment Committee, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, or the regulated public utilities. This externship clinic requires a minimum of 12 placement hours work per week. A required seminar class also meets approximately twice per month either in class meetings or for one-on-one discussion of the substantive law and your experience.
I had the opportunity to work in the legal office at the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection through the CEEL clinic. It goes without saying that I gained valuable real world experience working on environmental and energy issues. But I also learned a lot about the day-to-day operation of state agencies and had the opportunity to work on a few employment and constitutional issues of the sort that an agency's attorneys have to address to keep the agency running smoothly.
The CEEL externship clinic renewed my interest in public service and sparked my interest in environmental law. The staff at the DEEP are exceptional: patient, dedicated, hardworking and kind, and provided me with had the opportunity to work on a wide range of topics and work products. CEEL was without hesitation, one of my most rewarding experiences in law school.
Applying for the CEEL externship clinic requires two steps:
- Contact the CEEL Executive Director and express your interest. Please prepare a resume, writing sample, and an informal transcript. There will likely be an interview with our corresponding placement partners. The earlier you can make the commitment, the greater the chance for placement.
- Be sure to register for the clinic through your regular course registration. For any questions, please contact Professor Joseph MacDougald.