E-IPER is an extremely flexible and supportive program that allowed me to research indigenous subsistence practices in a land management context while working with peers focusing on vastly different environmental issues. This flexibility is one of the strengths of E-IPER because it encourages you to explore a wide range of cutting-edge departments at Stanford University. I took classes in the Biology, Earth Systems, Civil and Environmental Engineering, and History departments in addition to my law courses. This brought me outside of the law school bubble and enriched my understanding of environmental issues from diverse perspectives. I also learned a lot from my E-IPER classmates who approached problems with different lenses and analyses than my law school peers.
The support I received from E-IPER also radically enhanced my experience during my JD/MS and empowered me to perform meaningful research with ongoing impact. In my second year I partnered with a PhD student in the E-IPER program and together we received one of E-IPER's Collaboration Grants to research management of subsistence resources by Inupiat communities in the Northwest Arctic of Alaska. I got to travel to this remote community multiple times thanks to the grant, produce a documentary film, and have a publication pending on the community-centered approach our work took. Performing this non-traditional, responsive research with a community was only possible thanks to the support and patience of the E-IPER program. I now live and work in Alaska as a lawyer and already have a strong network of individuals to serve and collaborate with in the future. E-IPER opened many doors I would have otherwise never even known to knock on.