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U.S.-China Partnership for Environmental Law LLM Fellowship

The U.S. - China Partnership for Environmental Law ("China Program") at Vermont Law School invites applications for a two-year graduate fellowship starting in August 2013. The fellowship combines the opportunity to obtain an LLM in Environmental Law or an LLM in American Legal Studies from one of the leading environmental law programs in the nation with the opportunity to gain practical international environmental law experience on a variety of policy coordination, research, and educational outreach projects. The fellowship includes a full tuition waiver. A salary stipend of up to  $35,000 may be available for the selected LLM fellow depending on available funding.

Nature of the Fellowship

The LLM fellow will work closely with the faculty director, the program director and other team members of the China Program to help coordinate and implement the range of projects being carried out. In addition to pursuing an LLM in environmental law or an LLM in American Legal Studies, the fellow will work closely with China Program faculty and will take the lead role in at least one major project.

The goal of the China Program is to strengthen the rule of law in environmental protection and to build capacity among individuals and academic, government, and private-sector institutions to solve pollution and energy problems. The program has three main objectives:

  • strengthen the capacity of the Chinese educational, governmental, nonprofit, and business sectors to become effective environmental and energy problem solvers
  • improve China's policies, systems, laws, and regulations to advance the development and enforcement of environmental and energy law and to help develop the rule of law
  • enhance municipal, provincial, national, and international networks in China to advance best practices in environmental protection and energy regulation

These objectives are being pursued through environmental and energy law workshops and conferences in China and the U.S., through efforts to build the institutional capacity of law schools, NGOs, courts, and government agencies, and through student and faculty-led research and policy development projects.

For more information about the U.S. -China Partnership for Environmental Law, please visit the program's homepage,

LLM in Environmental Law

The LLM in Environmental Law degree is designed for a select group of post-JD candidates seeking to specialize in the practice of environmental law, or pursue careers in teaching, research, or public policy. Candidates include recent law school graduates and practicing lawyers who wish to develop an environmental law specialty. The cornerstone of the LLM program is the Graduate Seminar. A minimum of 30 academic credits are required to complete the program. For the China Program fellow, this thirty credit program is spread over two years. Vermont Law School's environmental law curriculum includes more than fifty courses in environmental law, policy, science, and ethics. For more information about the LLM in Environmental Law degree program, please visit the Environmental LLM degree page.

LLM in American Legal Studies

The Master of Laws in American Legal Studies is specifically designed for students who hold a law degree from an institution outside of the United States. Our LLM students take all their courses together with the JD students, so they have immersion in the US law school experience. The required courses provide a solid foundation in US law and US legal method. Again, for the China Program fellow, the LLM in American Legal Studies program is spread over two years. Some US states permit foreign lawyers who earn an LLM in US law to take the bar exam and be admitted to practice in their state, if certain other requirements are met. For more information about the LLM in American Legal Studies program, please visit the ALS LLM degree page.

Fellowship Qualifications

Qualifications for the China Program LLM Fellowship include:

  • admission to the LLM in Environmental Law or LLM in American Legal Studies programs
  • a demonstrated commitment to environmental or energy issues in China/Asia
  • prior practice or other experience in environmental or energy law
  • strong legal writing and communications skills
  • some Chinese language skills or acquiring such skills

How to Apply for the Fellowship

Applicants interested in the China Program LLM Fellowship must submit the LLM application to the Vermont Law School admissions office by March 1. In addition to the materials required for the LLM applications, applicants must submit a brief statement (not longer than one single-spaced page) explaining the applicant's interest in the fellowship. Decisions on the China Program LLM Fellowship will be made by May 1.

If you have any questions about the China Program LLM Fellowship, please contact Jingjing Liu, the Associate Director of the U.S.-China Partnership for Environmental Law, at

For general admissions questions, please contact the admissions office at