Nicodemus Digs Into Wildlife Crimes

Traveling from the dry flat lands of West Texas to the Green Mountains of Vermont, A&E’s Dr. Michael Nicodemus, assistant professor of environmental science, had a unique opportunity this summer in New England. Through Vermont Law School, Nicodemus was able to take a class entitled Wildlife Crimes. As the new professor for A&E’s Environmental Law and Policy class, Nicodemus wanted to get as much experience with environmental law as possible.

“It gave me a clear idea of how a law class should be taught,” Nicodemus said.

The course introduced students to the domestic statutes and international treaties that regulate and prohibit unlawful wildlife taking and trafficking. In addition, it emphasized the enforcement schemes and methods used to address these crimes.

This summer session course was taught by Robert Anderson, senior trial attorney for the Environmental Crimes Section of the U.S. Department of Justice.

“Since Robert Anderson actually practices law, class didn’t just consist of descriptions of cases. He was able to talk about the behind the scenes of the case and explained how things really worked,” Nicodemus said. “It wasn’t just a flashy, broad presentation. He worked the nuts and bolts of the cases with us.”

Nicodemus made it clear that this wasn’t a trip just to prepare for his new class. This was also an opportunity to network .

“I wanted to establish relationships with Vermont Law School as an opportunity to help our students,” Nicodemus said. “Vermont Law School is the number one place to study environmental law in the country and I want our students who are interested in that area of study to have a foot in the door there."

Learn more about A&E’s Environmental Law and Policy class (ENVR 410) in the course catalog.

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