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Master of Energy Regulation and Law


The Master of Energy Regulation and Law (MERL) degree program  focuses on law and policy governing energy use, production, and transmission. Students can complete the 30-credit program in as little as 12 months but can take up to five years to obtain their degree.

Vermont Law School's MERL program responds to the rapid growth of the alternative energy sector as well as the environmental problems associated with traditional energy production. The emergence of a smart electric grid and the prospects for electrifying the transportation sector are revolutionizing the energy field. Well-trained professionals with the MERL degree are needed to be effective agents of change in business, economics, public policy, nonprofit administration, and law.

MERL students choose electives from more than 50 courses in energy and environmental law taught by the world-renowned faculty of Vermont Law School. Energy courses are taught by faculty associated with the law school's highly respected Institute for Energy and the Environment.

The Master of Energy Regulation and Law program provides students with practical training in public advocacy and writing for a legal policy audience, opportunities for independent research with support from faculty, and externships at organizations around the country and the world.

Career Pathways

Vermont Law School's MERL program prepares students for challenging careers in the expanding energy field, including managing companies engaged in energy production, transmission, and conservation; advocating for renewable energy or energy conservation in the non-profit sector; and helping energy companies achieve compliance with environmental laws.


The Master of Energy Regulation and Law is a 30-credit master's program with four required courses and the opportunity to select from the law school's large number of elective courses.

What Students and Graduates Say

Vermont Law School graduates go on to influential careers in the United States and abroad, with governments, non-profit organizations, and leading private firms.

Faculty   New window icon

The faculty at Vermont Law School includes dedicated teachers, scholars, litigators, policy makers, and mentors for our students.

Admissions   New window icon

An excellent general education, along with an inquiring, disciplined, and cultivated mind, are the most important qualifications for the study of environmental law and policy. Vermont Law School looks favorably on undergraduate and graduate programs that give students an opportunity to analyze critically and think creatively. Precision, fluency, and economy in speaking and writing are the most vital skills for success at Vermont Law School.