NYC Mock Trial teams come in 2nd and 3rd place at State Finals

Regis High School, pictured above, placed 2nd at the New York State Mock Trial tournament

Congratulations to Regis High School and Hunter College High School for their strong showing (2nd and 3rd place, respectively) at the NYSBA Mock Trial state tournament!

The state finals in Albany marked the end of another successful season of Mock Trial. In New York City, nearly 90 schools from all five boroughs participated, and over 150 volunteer attorneys and judges gave their time and energy to provide this positive educational experience to well over a thousand students.

The Justice Resource Center would like to thank the teachers, school faculty, parents, and court staff for their hard work that makes this program possible.

Hunter College HS - 2017 MT NYC Finals
Hunter College High School celebrates advancing to the state finals on May 3, 2017 in NYC.

Justice Resource Center hosts annual Youth Law Conference

James B. Kobak, chair of the NYCLA Justice Center, gives opening remarks at the start of the conference.


The Justice Resource Center, in collaboration with the New York County Lawyers Association, hosted the annual Youth Law Conference on April 28th, 2017. Eighty-two students from 5 high schools attended workshops on various topics, from Art Provenance to Personal Injury, each facilitated by an expert attorney in their field.

NYCLA president Carol Sigmund and keynote speaker Columbia professor Christopher Riano gave inspiring speeches that resonated with the students. “It was Carol Sigmund’s energy that encouraged me to pursue a law-related career” wrote one student. Another wrote “I enjoyed Professor Riano’s speech because it taught me a lot of life lessons.”

Winners of NYCLA Essay Contest Announced

The Hon. Richard Lee Price (ret.) and the Law-Related Education Committee of the New York County Lawyers Association (NYCLA) announced the winners of the 2017 Public High School Essay Contest at an awards ceremony at NYCLA offices on Monday, May 15th.

This year’s essay topic was the New York State Constitutional Convention. The top 10 essayists were invited along with their teachers and families. Members of the Law-Related Education Committee were present to congratulate the students and present their awards, including Larry Carbone, Marian Burnbaum, Sue Vairo, Margo Brodie, and Debra Lesser.

Top 10 Essayists
1 – Mersina Ziljkic -William Cullen Bryant High School
2 – Andrea Ma – Stuyvesant High School
3 – Steven R. Criscola – New Utrecht High School
4 – Anna Quach – Stuyvesant High School
5 – Arabelle Pierre-Louise – James Madison High School
6 – Brooke Jin – Stuyvesant High School
7 – Elizabeth Ashkinazi – James Madison High School
8 – Aaron Khan – James Madison High School
9 – Elahie Baksh – John Adams High School
10 – Alexander Henry – Hillcrest High School

JRC Nominee Wins Professional Educator Award

Tara Kelly accepts her award at the 2017 NYSCSS Convention
Tara Kelly accepts her award at the 2017 NYSCSS Convention

The New York State Council for the Social Studies presented the Outstanding Social Studies Classroom Teacher Award to Tara Kelly at their annual conference last weekend. Tara was nominated for the award by the Justice Resource Center in recognition of her “demonstrated exceptional teaching ability” in her Forest Hills classroom and with the JRC’s We the People workshops. Congratulations, Tara!


2017 Law Day – High School Essay Contest

The Association of Justices of the Supreme Court of the State of New York and the New York Law Journal have partnered with the New York City Dept. of Education to sponsor the Sixteenth annual essay contest for 10th, 11th and 12th grade high school students.  Ten students will win the opportunity to intern for one week with a Justice of the Supreme Court and earn a $100.00 gift card.  A maximum of ten entries from each school will be considered. One of the winning essays will be published in the New York Law Journal, a legal periodical published by ALM.

The Law Day theme for 2017, is “The 14th Amendment:  Transforming American Democracy.”

The 2017 theme provides the opportunity to explore the many ways that the Fourteenth Amendment has reshaped American law and society.  Ratified during Reconstruction a century and a half ago, the Fourteenth Amendment serves as the cornerstone of landmark civil rights legislation, the foundation for numerous court decisions protecting fundamental rights, and an inspiration for all those who advocate for equal justice under law.

Students should write a 500 word essay presenting a compelling discussion on the topic with special focus on the importance and impact of the Fourteenth Amendment.

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