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2022-2023 Scholarship Recipient Avery Steen

Avery Steen, of Odessa, Texas, is in her second year at Dedman School of Law at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Her hometown is known for two things: high school football and oil and gas production, which prompted her interest in natural resource law.

As a child, she was taught about hydraulic fracturing and visited the Petroleum Museum. She even created a model pump jack for her school science fair project. Avery watched the oil industry thrive and fail throughout childhood, and these experiences led to her desire to give back to her community.

Avery has worked at global energy company Bracewell LLP where she was a summer associate. There, she edited sales agreements, drafted closing documents, and learned about the oil and gas industry’s transition to renewable energy. After this experience, Avery decided she wanted to study energy law.

Avery returned to work at Bracewell LLP this past summer.

“I want to aid smaller oil and gas companies in their transition to developing renewable sources of energy, as well as oil and gas…second, I want to work on renewable projects in West Texas,” Steen said.

She got recommendations from Professors John Lowe, and Ruth Cross.

“What Avery did in my course is pretty much what she has done in all her courses at SMU Law School,” Lowe said. “She works flat-out, harder than most any student I can recall.”

Avery was Cross’ teaching assistant.

“In that capacity, she has shown great leadership and has been a great mentor to my students, going above and beyond what I have asked. Avery is very personable and engaging and, obviously, is willing to put in the time and effort needed to excel in all that she undertakes.”

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