Ann Prouty ’09 had an atypical year prior to starting law school: She spent it working at a Rocky Mountain ski resort.
“I love the outdoors,” says Prouty, who grew up in Colorado and plans to head back there after graduation. “I love the mountains. Colorado always felt like home.”
At Columbia Law School, Prouty focused on environmental law. After three years of study, she marvels at the breadth of coursework she undertook and the variety of environmental issues she learned about prior to graduating. Prouty found especially rewarding her experience in the Environmental Law Clinic, where she researched and wrote portions of a brief in Riverkeeper v. EPA that was reviewed by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Prouty also served as the senior executive editor of the Columbia Journal of Environmental Law, which will soon publish a student note she wrote on the Clean Development Mechanism, a provision in the Kyoto Protocol.
Living in a city of skyscrapers and concrete was an adjustment for the nature-lover, but the experience has been one Prouty enjoyed: “It’s unlike anywhere I’ve ever been,” she says. During her last few weeks in New York, Prouty plans to soak in as much as she can before heading back to the mountains—a visit to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a Saturday Night Live taping at NBC studios, and perhaps one more picnic in Central Park.
After graduation, Prouty will join Faegre & Benson in Denver, where she hopes to practice environmental law. Her memories of the Law School will be fond. “I’ll miss the city, and the excitement, and the vibrancy,” she says. “I made such great friends here, such incredibly smart and interesting people.” As for the most valuable thing she gained from her time at Columbia Law School, Prouty doesn’t hesitate before answering: “Columbia gave me the confidence that I can handle any challenge I come across."