ELJ, Law School Demand Time

Hours didn’t mean much to Andrew J. Butcher after he joined the Energy Law Journal editorial staff.
That was because it took time — lots of time — to put out the publication and maintain a full class load at the University of Tulsa College of Law.
It takes commitment, he said, because short weeks vary between 10 to 20 hours. That extends probably close to 40 hours as press time approaches.
Butcher relaxed for a moment before going to another meeting at the law school because the latest of two publications had just gone to press. It will be released in about three weeks.
‘‘I knew there would be a lot of work involved, but I didn’t know the intensity,’’ he said. This required time over two years — four semesters — and staff members earn between two and five credits, depending upon their position.
As outgoing Editor-in-Chief, Butcher feels good about his experience.
He learned how to manage 40 people, all dealing with heavy workloads. Except for the school credits, they were unpaid.
Butcher, who graduates from law school in May, was attracted to the Energy Law Journal because it is a practitioner’s journal relevant to the field.
People use this book and it is especially important locally because energy is huge in Tulsa.
Students serving on the ELJ staff generally are recruited and make a good fit, he said. It is great experience and an opportunity to get published.
Butcher will have his first piece in the upcoming ELJ. The topic is ‘‘In Search of a Remedy to the Nuclear Storage Conundrum: Western Shoshone National Council vs United States.
The topic involves the controversy around a nuclear storage facility being built in the Yucca Mountains, sorting out legal issues where the Western Shoshone Indians and state of Nevada can oppose the construction.
Everyone involved with the publication learned by editing articles and talking to the authors, he said. That helped expand knowledge that can be taken to jobs following graduation.
‘‘The most important lesson I learned is how to deal with people. That also means listening to ideas and giving them some thought before making decisions that often must be made quickly.’’
Butcher, originally from Green Bay, Wisc., received his undergraduate degrees from the University of Minnesota. The transition to Tulsa came from a friend’s recommendation after his family moved to Louisville, Ky.
Following graduation, he will join the Scopelitis Garvin Light & Hansen law firm in Indianapolis.
The majority of the work will be with the trucking industry, he said. Both trucking and energy are highly regulated so there are practice similarities.
Butcher worked a summer clerkship position at the firm in 2006.

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