June 01, 2012

Jordan Schoonover

Trustees for Alaska, Anchorage, AK

This summer I interned at Trustees for Alaska, a nonprofit environmental law firm in Anchorage, Alaska.  Trustees represents local and national citizen groups, Alaska Native Corporations, and individuals in cases focused on a variety of environmental issues affecting the state.  Trustees works to protect Arctic ecosystems, address impacts of global warming, promote clean air and water, and prevent destructive impacts of mining in Alaska.

Prior to law school, I worked as a field botanist in Alaska and was privileged to be able to visit some of the areas affected by Trustees’ cases.  I was extremely grateful to receive a PILP stipend this summer, which allowed me to return to Alaska so that I could work to protect and continue to explore an incredible place. 

I learned an extraordinary amount during my 10-week internship.  I researched topics ranging from federal abstention doctrine to experimental halibut fishing permits.  I drafted a reply brief, a notice of appeal, four legal memos, and several letters to agencies.  I also helped the attorneys prepare for an oral argument before the Alaska Supreme Court and participated in meetings with clients and experts.


Throughout the summer, I was guided by the talented attorneys at Trustees who were always available to answer questions, provide feedback, and offer career advice.  Of the seven attorneys at Trustees, three are graduates of Lewis & Clark Law School, and I was proud to represent Lewis & Clark as one of six summer interns. 


I would like to thank the dedicated students, alumni, and donors who make PILP stipends possible and enable students like me to gain valuable experience while working with wonderful organizations like Trustees for Alaska.