Elsbeth Magilton

Elsbeth Magilton Lecturer, Director of Externships

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Biography

Elsbeth Magilton is the Director of Externships and a Lecturer at the University of Nebraska College of Law. As part of the Space, Cyber, and National Security Law Program, Elsbeth teaches U.S. Space Law and Policy and was a 2023-2024 Scowcroft National Security Fellow at the Eisenhower Center for Space and Defense in the U.S. Air Force Academy. She has served as a faculty mentor to the U.S. Strategic Command Fellows program at the University of Nebraska-Omaha since 2022, and is also a faculty researcher at the Nebraska Deterrence Lab (NDL). NDL conducts research on multi-actor deterrence, multi-actor quantitative risk, and decision-making for private, public, and defense sectors. In September 2018 Elsbeth’s team received a major NASA Space Law pilot-program grant to create a nationwide network of students, faculty, and practitioners interested in space law and policy. She is member of the “SPACE²” University of Nebraska Grand Challenges Team, whose vision is for the University of Nebraska-Lincoln to grow the first acre of corn on Mars’ soil.

Elsbeth was a 2023 TEDx speaker, has keynoted multiple conferences, spoke at SXSW in 2021, and speaks internationally on space topics and education. 

In addition to her interest in space law and technology, Elsbeth specializes in experiential legal education and practical workforce development. In 2022 Elsbeth was named a “NExt Pioneer” fellow with the Nebraska Tech Collaborative – a workforce initiative examining tech talent retention in the Midwest. In September 2022 she was appointed to her present position as the Director of Externships at Nebraska Law. As the program’s inaugural Director she developed a new experiential learning curriculum for law students in field placements outside the college, and teaches the general externship course, the nonprofit board service course, and ‘Public Speaking for Attorneys’ classes.

Magilton is part of the U.S. State Department Speaker’s Program under the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Under that program she most recently visited the Digital Learning Hub and Women In Digital Empowerment groups in Luxembourg, discussing experiential education and workforce development. She also facilitated a roundtable discussion for the UzSpace agency and the U.S. Embassy in Tashkent on Uzbekistan’s commercial and governmental space interests, and gave series of lectures for the New Zealand and Australian Space Council on behalf of the U.S. Consulate in Auckland, New Zealand. Elsbeth is a member of the American Society of International Law and served as the Co-Chair (2020-2021) for the Space Law Interest Group. She is also a member of the Legal Expert Pool for the European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats.

Elsbeth previously served (2021-2023) as the board president for Girls Code Lincoln, a nonprofit organization striving to ignite passion for technology and leadership in 4th-9th grade students. She also is a member of the Advisory Board for the Branched Oak Observatory, an outdoor and indoor (open-roof) sky park supported by science education professionals and astronomy enthusiasts. Elsbeth is also a Lincoln Public Schools volunteer and a Girl Scout Troop Co-Leader. She would almost always rather be outside making art or building robots.

Elsbeth received her B.A., cum laude, from Doane University in 2008 in graphic design. After starting her career in web development, Elsbeth shifted into technology policy during law school. She earned her J.D. from the University of Nebraska College of Law and received a concentration in Cyberlaw. During law school Elsbeth also attended the William and Mary College of Law, working with the Center for Legal and Court Technology.

Personally, Elsbeth enjoys being a parent, reading, and gaming. She is married to a concert and event chef who has fed musicians and athletes around the country.

Courses

Field Placement (Externship) Course
The Field Placement (Externship) Class is the classroom components for Nebraska Law students completing field work and is required when registering for externship hours. The general course is designed to complement fieldwork, offering opportunities for thoughtful reflection about student experiences and to enhance and improve student skills.

Nonprofit Board Service Field Placement (Externship) Program Course
Second- and third-year law students should be encouraged to begin thinking about how lawyers lead others, including serving in their community. Many attorneys are asked to join non-profit boards, bringing their skills to these important organizations. This “course plus externship course” is an opportunity for students to learn about this type of service, engage with alumni, and reflect on how they can use their developing professional skills to benefit their community. In the Board Service Program law students who are in, or have taken, Nonprofit Organizations may extern on a nonprofit board of directors in a non-voting seat.

Public Speaking for Lawyers
Regardless of what area of law you work in, lawyers are often called upon to also be performers, storytellers, teachers, and oral advocates. Whether it’s in the court room, in the board room, to training sessions, or in classrooms, public speaking is often part of the job. The course is designed to develop your speaking skills in an array of settings with a focus on the core tenants of good public speaking practices.

Issues in U.S. Space Regulation and Policy
This course explores U.S. domestic space law, regulation, and policy. That is, the methods and legal approaches the U.S. has historically used and presently uses to regulate the space and space technology industries activity within the country. The course is dedicated to the background and history of U.S. space law and policy, diving deeply into several pieces of regulation and national space policy. The final grade will be assessed based on three factors: a final paper written as a congressional white paper, a presentation on that topic, and a take home exam on U.S. space policy and regulation. To be eligible students must have taken Space Law. This course is also open to on campus and online LLM students.

Research in a Selected Field and Student Concentrations
Magilton supports students interested in space law and policy, and in some domestic cyber issues, through independent research supervision. She may also supervise concentrations focused in domestic or commercial space law. Interested students should book a meeting to discuss.

Articles

Mutually Assured Discussion: Lessons in Space Law to Mitigate a Waning Nuclear Arms Regime  Issue 2 of Volume 33 of the Minnesota Journal of International Law

On-Orbit Satellite Servicing Standards Are a Necessity for the Private Space Industry.  American Bar Association Forum on Air and Space, Air and Space JournalSeptember, Volume 31, Number 3, 2018 Co-Authored with Danielle Miller.

Finding a North Star: How Lessons in Space Law May Mitigate a Weakening Nuclear Arms Regime  Space and Defense Journal, U.S. Air Force Academy, Winter 2024 (note, this is a shortened version of the article appearing the Minnesota Journal of International Law, with permission)

Diplomatic Impact in the Stars? A Review of the Impact of the Artemis Accords on Global Relationships  The Catholic University Journal of Law and Technology, Co-Authored with Josh Lee and Amelia Ruffolo

Ready Party One: The History and Developing Role of Online Dispute Resolution Technology From VoIP to Virtual Reality  Penn State Arbitration Law Review, 2018

“Confidence in Contracting and Cutting Costs: Why Attorneys Need to Pay Attention to Blockchain Systems” reprinted with permission  SC Lawyer Magazine

“My Journey Preparing Women for Success in Tech and Space Policy.”  American Bar Association Law Practice Today, February 2018

Science and Strength: The History of the Relationship Between Civil and Military Space Organizations in the United States  presented and published in theproceedings of the 73rd International Astronautical Congress (IAC), Copyright ©2022 by the International Astronautical Federation (IAF)

US Department of Defense Commissioned Conference Report and Summary as part of a Task Order under FA4600-12-D-9000 under the University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) Engineering, Advanced Operational Law Conference (Principal Investigator and Editor)  U.S. Strategic Command Public Affairs, November 2017

International Astronautical Congress 2019 Proceedings, IAF Education Symposium  “10 Years in Space Law: Lessons in Educating Post-Doctoral Students in Space Law"

Book Chapters
Presentations

TEDx Omaha November, 2023

Wisconsin NASA Space Grant Consortium Annual Conference, Opening Plenary/Keynote, "Regulating the Final Frontier: The Role of Law in Innovative Space Activities" University of Wisconsin Platteville, August 15, 2019

CBS and Creation Entertainment Officially Licensed Star Trek Convention, invited academic guest, "Can Regulation Help Us Boldly Go? Real World Space Law Through a Star Trek Filter." Las Vegas Nevada, August 1, 2019

American Association of Law Schools (AALS) Annual Conference, Panelist, Distance and Online Education New Orleans, LA, January 4, 2019

U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services Agency, "Space Law and Supporting Women," Women's History Month Speaker March 27, 2019

2018 US Strategic Command Deterrence Symposium, Moderator of New Thinking on Deterrence and Academic Alliance Panel August 2, 2018

St. Mary's School of Law Women’s Law Association, Guest Lecturer, “Empowering Women to Bridge the Gap Between Law & Technology" St. Mary's School of Law, October 3, 2018

Kansas State University, Pre-Law Ambassadors, Guest Lecturer, "Space Law 101," Kansas State University, October 15, 2018

Newman University, Guest Lecturer, “The Practice of Cyber Law" Professor Kristi Edwards's Course, Social Sciences Department, Wichita Kansas, March 29, 2018

Newman University, Guest Lecturer, “Introduction to the Basic Tenets of Space Law” Bishop Gerber Science Center, Wichita Kansas, March 28, 2018

Doane University Business Law Class, Guest Speaker, “Space Law 101" Crete Nebraska, December 5, 2017

Seattle Museum of Flight Women in Aerospace Groups, Guest Speaker and Workshop Leader for the Women Who Launch and Seattle Space Gals, “Empowering Women to Bridge the Gap Between Law & Technology” Museum of Flight, Seattle Washington, January 9, 2018

Space Entrepreneurs Seattle Meet-Up Group, Guest Speaker, “Introduction to the Basic Tenants of Space Law" January 10, 2018

University of Missouri College of Law, Columbia, Guest Speaker, “Military Space and Cyber Policy: The DoD Perspective” Columbia Missouri, October 1, 2018

Asteroid Day at Mueller Planetarium, Featured Presenter (Recurring Event) June 29, 2017

Guest Speaker, “Space law, national security, and your clients data: how satellite regulation ties industries together.” University of Kansas College of Law, Lawrence, March 7, 2017

U.S. State Department Speaker Program, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, lecture and roundtable with the UzSpace agency and the U.S. Embassy in Tashkent on Uzbekistan’s commercial and governmental space interests May 2022

Missouri and Kansas National Guard Judge Advocate Continuing Legal Education Conference, Kansas City Missouri, on the history of the military’s relationship to the space domain and current space hot topics June 2021

U.S. State Department Speaker Program, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, lecture series on Commercial Space Issues for the New Zealand and Australian Space Council on behalf of the U.S. Consulate in Auckland New Zealand Spring 2021

ASCENDxSummit Space Policy and Education, 21st Century Workforce event on Space Law, Panelist October 21, 2020

Nebraska Virtual Space Law Week, Spectrum Issues Before the FCC, Panel Moderator October 1, 2021

Women in Space Law Public Panel Hosted by the Dean of the University of Adelaide School of Law Adelaide South Australia, September 26, 2019

Hamilton Space School, Space Careers Panel and Student Submissions to the Australian Space Agency Adelaide South Australia, September 26, 2019

ASCENDxSummit Space Policy and Education, 21st Century Workforce event on Space Law, Panelist October 21, 2020

Nebraska Virtual Space Law Week, Spectrum Issues Before the FCC, Panel Moderator October 1, 2021

Women in Space Law Public Panel Hosted by the Dean of the University of Adelaide School of Law Adelaide South Australia, September 26, 2019

Hamilton Space School, Space Careers Panel and Student Submissions to the Australian Space Agency Adelaide South Australia, September 26, 2019

Other
Date: 
Wednesday, June 8, 2022
Date: 
Friday, March 24, 2023
Awards

20 Under 40 Young Professionals Making a Difference  Lincoln Journal Star, June 2013

NExt Pioneer, Nebraska Tech Collaborative, named in summer 2022  

Inspire Lincoln Awards Nominee in the Education and Large Business Categories, Lincoln Journal Star, a community award recognizing women leaders and the impact they are making in the community  September 2021

John H. Binning Award for Excellence, nominated by students and colleagues and selected by the Dean, the award is presented to a member of the administration of the College of Law  Oct 2018

Media

Space.com, "Can We Prevent War in Space? These Guidelines May Help," article by Charles Q. Choi  May 2, 2018

Omaha World Herald, "Editorial: NU College of Law is part of international space-law project"  May 21, 2018

“Happy Asteroid Day”  Lincoln Journal Star, June 28, 2015