Program in Natural Resources Systems

Capstone Course

Natural Resources Systems Capstone Course
Texas A&M School of Law
Spring 2018
2 Semester Credits
Wednesdays, 1:30pm – 3:40pm

Course Description:
This course offers a capstone experience enabling students to blend their substantive doctrinal training in various natural resource-related legal areas with the development of practical skills and professional identity. A chief objective is to better prepare students to begin practicing law upon graduation. Students will also gain valuable experience and contacts, which will enhance their qualifications for long-term career opportunities. The class will be modeled on a typical law firm practice where students will have to work in teams, understand client demands, confront decision-making challenges, and manage workload. Substantively, the course content will depend on the topic identified for that particular semester and could encompass two or more natural resource legal areas, such as agricultural, energy, environmental, land use, oil and gas, and/or water issues.

The Spring 2018 Capstone Course will involve inverse condemnation, water law, land use, and other issues related to the massive flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey in late August 2017. The course will respond to a request for guidance and information about legal issues and potential liability relating to water released from Lake Livingston in South Texas that inundated property downstream of the reservoir. The class will work on this project with the Trinity River Authority, which owns and operates Lake Livingston.

Course Conditions:
  • Students in their final year of law school, and those who have taken one or more natural resources-related courses, are preferred. Other students will be admitted based on space availability.
  • Selection of students for enrollment in the Capstone Course will be in the sole discretion of the Capstone Course faculty.
  • This Capstone Course involves working and coordinating with an external entity. Accordingly, barring extraordinary circumstances, students must commit to attend all class meetings and the field trip.

PINRS logo stack