From participating in a mock trial to touring the state capitol to visiting the New London neighborhood that spawned a now famous Supreme Court case, a group of Hartford high school students will spend part of their summer immersed in the law.
Students from the UConn School of Law have partnered with the Hartford law firm of Robinson & Cole LLP and Hartford public schools to hold a four-week summer law institute through August 7 for more than 20 students from the capital city.
Students involved in the program will be entering the newly formed Law and Government Academy at Hartford Public High School in the fall.
Conceived by members of UConn’s Black Law Student Association, the program aims to encourage the pursuit of higher education and cultivate an interest in the law among participants.
Under the guidance of Jennifer Mailly, an assistant clinical professor of law, 12 Robinson & Cole LLP Law and Government Community Teaching Fellows from the law school will work alongside teachers from Hartford.
They will introduce students to the study of the law, provide exposure to the legal system, and promote interaction with local practitioners.
“It is a core aspect of our mission to serve the people of our community and our state,” says Jeremy Paul, dean of the Law School.
“The structure of this program will enable our fellows to work directly with students in the classroom, teaching them about the law and illustrating for them the value of higher education. We’re proud to work with the Hartford public schools and Robinson & Cole on this exciting new summer institute.”
Jackie Scheib, a 1996 graduate of the law school who is now a partner at Robinson & Cole, says, “The program fits perfectly with several of our firm’s key goals. Through the institute we are supporting increased diversity in the legal community and improvement in the lives of Hartford youths, which positively impacts Hartford. Plus, we have the opportunity to give back to UConn – a school where many of our staff and attorneys received their education.”
| President Michael J. Hogan, center, meets with students (in dark blue shirts), participating in the Summer Law Institute outside the Legislative Office Building in Hartford. At right are law students Ken Kukish and Aaron Dubois.
|Photo by Nidhi Parikh
Robinson & Cole employs about 50 UConn law graduates.
The Summer Law Institute offers mentoring relationships with high school students and will help prepare them for entrance into the new Law & Government Academy, a college preparatory school of 400 students, opening at Hartford Public High School this fall.
During its first year, the academy also will form partnerships with local organizations that promote its mission, including the Hartford County Bar Association and Leadership Greater Hartford.
“This is a great opportunity to get and keep young adults excited about the law and show them how knowing the law can be an empowering tool,” says Adam Johnson, principal of the Academy.
“This program truly acts as a bridge to bring our students into a profession from the ground up.”
As part of the program, the students will watch a mock trial, tour the state capitol building and Supreme Court, learn about the Constitution and civil rights, and hear guest speakers from the legal profession.
They will also visit the Fort Trumbull neighborhood in New London that was the flashpoint for the Kelo v. New London property rights case that was decided in 2005 by the U.S. Supreme Court.