Students receive scholarships from Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation

The Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation’s Scholarship Committee has awarded scholarships to four Washburn University School of Law students: Aaron Friess, Courtney Kelley, Ben Busboom, and Taylor Leftwich.

"As usual, Washburn’s students provided the Scholarship Committee with what they were looking for — accomplished, worthy students with a demonstrated interest in natural resources law,” said Washburn Law Professor David Pierce, Norman R. Pozez Chair in Business and Transactional Law.

To honor David Phillips, who retired after serving 42 years as the Foundation’s executive director, the Foundation created a special scholarship (now the most prestigious), titled the “David P. Phillips Scholarship.” This is the first year to make the award, and Washburn Law’s Aaron Friess is the recipient. Friess was previously awarded the Energy and Mineral Law Foundation “President’s Scholarship” in May. He is working this summer at the Hinkle Law Firm in Wichita.

Although it is rare for a first-year law student (1L) to receive a scholarship, Courtney Kelley is the recipient of one. Part of this can be attributed to the opportunities Washburn Law makes available to 1Ls to become active and demonstrate their interest in natural resources law. As a 1L Courtney took the intersession Mineral Title Examination course, attended the Horizontal Oil & Gas Development Special Institute in Westminster, Colo., attended the Hartrick Symposium on Career Paths for Young Attorneys in the Energy Sector in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and was also active in the Washburn Oil, Gas, and Energy Law Society. She was able to do all of this, and more, before the March application deadline for the scholarship. Kelley is working this summer with the Martin Pringle law firm.

Ben Busboom is working as an intern with Chesapeake Energy’s environmental compliance department in Oklahoma City, Okla. Taylor Leftwich is completing a six-week externship with Chevron in Houston, Texas.

“I can’t begin to emphasize how important the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation has been to Washburn,” Pierce said. “Although it is always the individual strengths of our students that determine whether they are hired, often the most difficult task it to create a reason for someone to look at their resume. These Foundations provide another avenue for Washburn students to be noticed so they can compete.”