The National Sea Grant Law Center


  • Meet New NSGLC Law Fellow: Olivia Deans

  • September 17th, 2020 — Category: Miscellaneous

  • The National Sea Grant Law Center (NSGLC) is pleased to announce that we’ve hired a second law fellow, Olivia Deans. Olivia received her J.D. from Vermont Law School in 2020 and a B.S. in Biological Sciences from Michigan Technological University in 2016. During her time at NSGLC, Olivia will focus on fisheries management and water law. We asked Olivia a few questions to get to know her better. Welcome, Olivia!

    1. Where are you from?

    I grew up in Gaylord, Michigan, and I have also lived in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

    2. What made you consider a career in law?

    During undergrad, I took an Oceanography course and found it very interesting! The course also opened my eyes to negative climate change impacts and other environmental problems. I started considering a career in law because I wanted to apply the environmental science I was learning about in my undergrad coursework to help positively shape public policy. I believe a legal education is a powerful tool that can be used to help solve environmental problems.

    3. What was your favorite class in law school?

    I tool a clinical education course in law school where we covered topics about how to be a successful practicing lawyer. We had guest lectures from practicing lawyers and also had weekly simulations where we would practice skills like negotiating or interviewing clients. Sometimes it was stressful to practice a new skill in front of legal professionals and my peers, but I found it very rewarding. The course inspired me to make the most out of my coursework so that I could be a successful practicing lawyer.

    4. Where’s your favorite beach?

    My favorite beach is Horseshoe Harbor, in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. It is a truly beautiful place. The beach is rocky, but filled with agates. It is also some of the coldest water I have ever swam in.

    5. What do you do in your free time?

    My favorite thing to do on the weekends is go camping! I enjoy almost all outdoor activities. Depending on where I am living, I am an avid alpine skier. During the weekday evenings, I enjoy relaxing with my cat and listening to podcasts.

    6. Who inspires you?

    Currently, I am inspired by many of my law school peers that I graduated with. I appreciate seeing them start careers that they are passionate about, and they inspire me to learn as much as I can from this fellowship position.

    7. Do you have any hidden talents? What are they?

    I would consider myself a talented quilter. Some of my family members are skillful and artistic quilters and have passed on some of that knowledge to me.

    8. What are you looking forward to doing during the fellowship?

    I am looking forward to working with and learning from other Sea Grant members and attorneys. I am also looking forward to developing my legal knowledge of coastal and water law. This is my first legal job after law school, so I am very excited to be a working legal professional.

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