The North Carolina Bar Foundation Lawyers in Schools programming coordinates a number of civic education-focused initiatives that connect judges, lawyers and paralegals with students and schools across the state. This school year presented new challenges and opportunities, inspiring teachers to open their virtual classrooms to engage North Carolina Bar Association member guest speakers and presenters in new and fun ways:
High school classroom guest speakers: Throughout the fall, volunteers from the NCBA Judicial Independence & Integrity Committee served as guest speakers in high school classrooms. Judges spoke with students about the role of the judiciary, the work of judges, and the branches of government.
Information panels: In April, the Future Lawyers Subcommittee of the NCBF Civic Education & Community Engagement Committee sponsored a law school information panel for college students considering law school. Guest speakers Caroline Gieser, Leila Hicks, Kayla Britt and Amy Richardson presented on topics including how to pick a law school and prep for the LSAT, what to expect in the first year of law school, and an introduction to the legal profession. More than 40 college students tuned in for this program, which offered an opportunity for Q&A and discussion with the panelists.
McIntyre Youth Leadership Challenge: This year’s McIntyre Youth Leadership Challenge was held as part of the annual Law Day programming sponsored by the NCBA Young Lawyers Division on May 7 and featured four student finalists who engaged their public speaking skills by presenting on a community advocacy issue of their choosing. The winning youth advocate, a student from R.J. Reynolds High School in Winston-Salem, spoke about hunger and food insecurity and earned a donation made in her name to the Samaritan Ministries Soup Kitchen in Winston-Salem.
Middle School Mock Trial: Wrapping up the school year, two middle schools competed in the first-ever all-virtual Middle School Mock Trial Competition on May 14. Teams from Brown Summit Middle School and Holy Trinity Catholic Middle school in Charlotte competed with the help of volunteer lawyers who served as judges and scorers for the competition.
Lawyers in School programs, along with all NCBF pro bono and public service programs, are made possible through individual gifts of support to the NCBF Annual Fund. Please consider making a donation today so that NCBF can continue to offer these and other civic education programs into the next school year.