The Environmental Law Clinic completed another successful and productive year working with a variety of community partners. Adjunct Professors Megan J. Houdeshel and Steven G. Jones supervised students in a diverse range of clinical placements, with five students working in clinical placements during the fall 2018 semester: Abigail Benesh (2L) worked for the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance Connor Klosterman (2L) worked for Utah Clean Energy; and Samantha Haw (2L) worked at the Department of Interior’s Office of the Regional Solicitor Office during the spring semester. Although not technically a clinical placement, Keslie Cooper (3L) was employed half time at Dominion Energy since the summer of 2018 and continued to work there while finishing her final year of law school.
For the fall 2019 semester, Professors Houdeshel and Jones are supervising another group of natural resources students. Their placements include Nate Broadhurst at the Department of Justice—Environmental Crimes; Rob Debirk with the Salt Lake Attorney’s office; Sarah Delap with the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance: Laurel Hagen with the Department of the Interior: Kayla Race with the Salt Lake City Attorney’s office: Emma Tanner with the Environmental Division of the Attorney General’s Office: and Alex Vandiver with the Department of the Interior.
The clinic appreciates the willingness of these partners to supervise our students, providingthem valuable training and experience. Professor Jones once again gave the students in the Environmental Practice class the opportunity to learn first-hand about the legal implications and remedies related to the Red Butte oil spill that occurred in 2011. Having been legal counsel for Chevron during the remediation and resolution of that issue, Professor Jones was able to share unique perspectives with the students. Additionally, Professor Houdeshel provided the students with insights into the myriad of environmental issues that arise in real property transactions and in permitting processes. These are some of the many practical experiences that Professors Jones and Houdeshel have shared with the students, giving them an idea of how the complicated web of environmental statutes and regulations are implemented in the “real world.” The Stegner Center looks forward to another year with ever-expanding clinical opportunities for our environmental law students.