Student and Internship Opportunities
In working to make a contribution towards lasting and long term environmental law reform and reconciliation with Indigenous nations, it’s important for us to support the next generation of lawyers that will continue this work into the future. West Coast welcomes law students to our office during the school year through a number of internship arrangements with law faculties (including Pro Bono Students Canada), and we also have a summer law student program with paid positions.
We aim to provide a meaningful exposure to public interest environmental law. Successful applicants assist staff lawyers in the areas of law reform, legal research and legal education.
Our current work includes innovative approaches to climate change compensation, providing legal analysis and advocacy to improve environmental assessment, energy regulation, and fish protection, developing legal protection for marine and coastal areas, and supporting urban sustainability and resilience. As well, through our RELAW program, West Coast Environmental Law provides legal and strategic support to Indigenous Nations who are revitalizing, articulating, and applying aspects of their laws in relation to questions of environmental governance. In all of our work we recognize that Indigenous law is law and are committed to approaches that support reconciliation. We also have a summary advice program that offers support to communities who face emerging environmental issues.
Summer Law Student Positions
West Coast welcomes a group of summer law students each year, with positions running from early May until mid-August. Students work closely with staff lawyers, and our work atmosphere is engaged and collaborative.
Student work is primarily legal research and writing in support of current West Coast activities, but students are integrated into the day-to-day life of our office, including staff meetings and educational opportunities. Students typically also participate in client meetings (where appropriate), may be assigned to report on court proceedings, and may participate in legal education and public outreach activities.
Our summer student positions offer compensation commensurate with our status as a not-for-profit organization.
*Applications for summer 2023 law student placements are now closed*
Legal volunteers and law student interns
We also accept applications for legal volunteers throughout the year. If you would like to explore the possibility of being a legal volunteer during the September - May period, please send us a copy of your CV, and a cover letter that describes your interests and availability. Send your application to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line: "Legal volunteer inquiry".