Membership Selection

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CJEL recruits rising second-year Columbia Law students who are enthusiastic about the work we do, who are interested in our issues, and who are committed to doing what it takes to get the job done right.

We offer staff members broad experience in editing and environmental law exposure.  Our staffers have direct contact with environmental law practitioners working at law firms, environmental organizations, and government agencies.  However, we do not require prior knowledge of or experience in environmental law.

Since we publish three issues per year, our cite-checking assignments are manageable.  Moreover, 2Ls have the opportunity to make substantive editorial decisions.

Our note publication program is voluntary and based entirely on your own interest.  This ensures that all staffers who commit to writing a note receive substantial guidance and encouragement throughout the editorial process, and a good chance of publication.  For staff members choosing not to write a note, we require a brief field report on a timely environmental law topic.

The Journal also enthusiastically recruits students joining the CLS community from other law schools and has a strong tradition of participation by transfer students on our staff and board.

Applications to CJEL should include:

  1. A 5-10 page writing sample such as a moot court brief, an entry from a legal writing competition, or a comparable piece of writing;
  2. A personal statement explaining your interest in being a part of the Columbia Journal of Environmental Law (2 double-spaced pages maximum);
  3.  A copy of your current resume;
  4.  A copy of your law school transcript.

Please make sure that your name appears at the top of all submitted materials. The personal statement will receive particular attention, but we will consider the application as a whole in making a determination.  Continuing student recruitment begins at the end of the Spring semester; transfer student recruitment typically begins in August.

Please contact the Editor-in-Chief at if you would like to discuss the journal in more detail.