University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law

Programs & Centers

Environmental Law Externship Program

Taylor Lilley Fellowship at the NAACP

Third year student Taylor Lilley spent her summer as Kellogg Law Fellow for the National Association for  the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Office of General Counsel. The NAACP Office of General Counsel maintains an active docket of civil rights cases and frequently works in conjunction with cooperating lawyers from around the nation to address civil rights violations. As a law fellow Lilley was able to explore her interest in environmental justice and meet experienced attorneys in the field. As part of an assignment given by the General Counsel, Lilley drafted an affirmative litigation proposal that endeavored to establish a substantive right to clean air and water. During the NAACP’s National Convention, Lilley helped to coordinate a panel on Environmental Justice which provided opportunities to discuss the status of environmental law and civil rights in the United States with the former head of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Environmental Justice department and a senior attorney from the Southern Environmental Law Center.  Lilley also worked with the NAACP’s Environmental and Climate Justice Program to draft a proposal to bring together lawyers from all over the country to address the challenges presented by climate change. Lilley valued being a part of an organization dedicated to ensuring the political, educational, social and economic equality for all minority group citizens and described the experience as “incomparable.”  Lilley stated that “it was humbling to work for the nation’s oldest and largest civil rights organization but more importantly I felt that I was able to learn a great deal about civil rights law and legal activism and gain an appreciation for what it means to be a civil rights lawyer.”

Renee Lani Summer Clerkship at the Environmental Integrity Project

Second year student Renee Lani spent her summer as a law clerk for the Environmental Integrity Project (EIP), a non-profit dedicated to the effective enforcement of environmental laws. Lani researched the meaning of “imminent and substantial endangerment” under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act’s citizen suit provision; applied her chemical engineering background to analyze the EPA’s final rule regulating Volatile Organic Compound emissions from gas flares, including the technical and scientific underpinnings for the final rule; and assessed Pennsylvania’s nutrient management plan regulatory system in the context of the recently upheld Chesapeake Bay TMDL. Lani was thrilled with the experience working at EIP, using her science background to affect policy change and working with dedicated attorneys on complex environmental challenges. “It was a great experience all around,” Lani says.  “I was able to utilize my background as a chemical engineer, make valuable contributions to EIP projects and learn a great deal from EIP’s attorneys and professionals along the way.”

The University of Maryland School of Law works with its students to place them in a variety of environmental law externships. Along with its Clinic, the Environmental Law Program Externship Program provides students ample opportunity to gain real-world experience addressing today’s environmental challenges.

Externship students can earn 4 to 11 credits (depending upon the amount of time devoted to the externship) and satisfy the experiential learning component for a Concentration in Environmental Law. Our student externs have worked on numerous environmental challenges with the government and non-profit organizations listed below.

  • The Environmental Protection Agency (Headquarters, Regions 1 (New England), 2 (N.Y.), 3 (Phil.), and 9 (Seattle))
  • The Department of Justice, Environment and Natural Resources Division
  • The Department of Interior
  • The World Health Organization (Geneva)
  • Center for International Environmental Law
  • American Wind Energy Association
  • Natural Resources Defense Council
  • The Honorable John Sarbanes, U.S. House of Representatives
  • Maryland Department of the Environment
  • The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • Chesapeake Bay Foundation
  • National Wildlife Federation
  • The Humane Society
  • American Chemistry Council
  • Maryland Department of Natural Resources
  • Environmental Law Institute
  • United States Senate, Committee on Environment and Public Works
  • United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Maryland, Environmental Crimes Unit
  • The United States House of Representatives, Committee on Government Reform
  • Baltimore City Solicitor’s Office, Land Use Division
  • The Environmental Defense Center
  • United States Department of Energy
  • Potomac Conservancy
  • Maryland Department of Transportation
  • Maryland Attorney General’s Office
  • Center for Human Rights and the Environment (Argentina)
  • United Nations Mine Action Service
  • Environmental Defense Fund
  • Council on Environmental Quality
  • Coalition to End Childhood Lead Poisoning
  • United States Agency for International Development
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
  • Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
  • Solar Energy Industry Association
  • Baltimore Harbor Waterkeepers
  • The Cleanup Coalition
  • Competitive Enterprise Institute
  • Friends of the Earth
  • National Association of Counties
  • National Trust for Historic Preservation

For more information concerning the Environmental Law Program’s externship opportunities, contact us.

William Piermattei
Managing Director, Environmental Law Program
University of Maryland School of Law
500 W. Baltimore Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21201

wpiermattei @

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500 W. Baltimore Street, Baltimore, MD 21201-1786 PHONE: (410) 706-7214 FAX: (410) 706-4045 / TDD: (410) 706-7714

Admissions: PHONE: (410) 706-3492 FAX: (410) 706-1793

Copyright © 2019, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. All Rights Reserved