Tag Archives: Keesal Young & Logan

The Mock Trial Turned Muse: Students Tackle Cyberbullying and Discover New Law Careers

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Attorney Heidi Dudderar (left) advises the ITA defense team from Phineas Banning High School during ITEP’s 2nd Annual Law Day.

15 students from Phineas Banning High School’s International Trade Academy (ITA) received a day-long crash course in the U.S. judicial system and explored various careers in the legal profession during ITEP’s 2nd Annual Law Day.  From the comfort of the 14th floor of the Keesal Young and Logan, our young attorneys-for-the-day fiercely debated the legal ramifications of cyberbullying in the case of Billings vs. Pearson.

“There are so many things that can be argued in a case,” said Carlos. The ITA junior spoke shyly, but with new confidence and curiosity about the legal process.

His fictional client, Cathy Jean Pearson (Aka “the bully”), was free to go—the verdict came back as a hung jury.

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ITA students step into the Keesal Young and Logan library to discuss case notes and prepare for cross examinations.

Minutes prior, we had observed Carlos, writing feverishly on his notepad as the plaintiff and defense team participated in direct and cross-examination. The intensity of hands-on learning had momentarily stripped away his shyness.

On the plaintiff’s side, things were a bit somber. The team was not able to secure a win for their client, but they did gain valuable experience making persuasive arguments. They also set the bar higher for next year, noting they wanted to try a criminal case and use props – a robe and gavel for the acting judge. The 2014 Law Day was in the works, and all the adults in the room smiled approvingly.

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The firm’s dining hall transforms into a courtroom for ITEP’s 2013 Law Day.

“It was a lot of fun today – I liked it,” said Sam, another ITA junior who testified as a witness for the plaintiff’s side. However, he made a confession to us before boarding his bus. “I was looking forward to arguing, but I was a witness… I like arguing… I wanted to prove my point.”  Next year, Sam!

Everyone played a role in the mock trial, from court reporter to case witness to attorney, and after all the “scary” parts (talking, presenting and cross examinations) were over, students exchanged constructive criticism and a shared few laughs with the real-life attorneys, their teachers for the day.

“…They are expected to pick up a process and a way of thinking that attorneys work on their entire life, and they’re expected to do it in six hours, and many of them wow me every single time because they just do it! It’s amazing,” said Jennifer Meeker, ITA advisory board member and attorney for Nossaman.

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ITA students discuss mock trial details while the jury deliberates.

If a mock trial during a Saturday can engage a young mind and awaken a student’s full potential, imagine what other elements are left to be uncovered? Even if we just skimmed the surface of future dream careers, the results are nothing short of inspirational.

“I learned how much work lawyers have to do. It’s a lot of work… but having the experience today, it made me actually consider a future in law – it’s interesting,” said Carlos.

“My dream is to go to USC – that’d be a dream.” The junior also spoke about his interest in civil engineering and architecture.

Encouraging Carlos to dream big is the key to ensuring a bright future –both his own and that of his community.  Giving Carlos and his classmates the opportunity to explore their dreams through hands-on experiences such as Law Day is ITEP’s mission and our daily delight.

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Our hard-working team! Left to right: Attorney Heidi Dudderar, Attorney Jennifer Meeker from Nossaman LLP, Attorney Lisa Barnett from A. Lavar Tayor Law Offices and Susie Emami, ITEP Program Manager.

We are extremely grateful for the guidance and support of Jennifer Meeker from Nossaman LLP, Lisa Barnett from A. Lavar Tayor Law Offices and Heidi Dudderar. Thank you, ladies! You made the 2nd Annual ITEP Law Day special and successful. We’d also like to recognize our gracious host, Keesal Young and Logan for lending their offices, staff and catering services. 

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Filed under Banning High School, ITA

Building dreams one scholarship at a time!

If every dream is built one step at a time, ITEP students took one giant leap on March 22, 2012 at the 12th Annual Scholarship Dinner, Building Dreams. Held at the World Cruise Terminal in San Pedro, nearly 600 students, teachers, and industry partners cheered on 12 ITEP seniors as they received well deserved scholarships and awards that will help them continue their success and dreams after high school.

Along with eight ITEP scholarship winners, Violet Paredes from GSS Academy won the HAIC Scholarship, and Alberto Limas from GESA won the LACBFFA Cecilia Castellanos Memorial Scholarship. Dennis Lord from Southern California Gas Company presented a scholarship to Nicole Diaz, a GESA Senior, and Dan Benoit, on behalf of the LACBFFA and FTA, presented the Rising Star! Award to Karima Dyes from Gardena High School’s Global Leadership Academy. The Carol Rowen 180 Degree Award went to Kaipo Soriano-Weeks, a hardworking and dedicated senior from GBAC at Carson High School.

ITEP was thrilled to present our Keeper of the Flame award to BNSF Railway, a longstanding supporter of ITEP and Mojave XP at Barstow High School. Trini Jimenez, Director of Government Relations and ITEP Board of Directors member, accepted the award along with Lawrence Dale, a retired BNSF employee and Mojave XP Advisory Board member. “We at BNSF are proud to be associated with such a remarkable organization. We look forward to continuing to support ITEP’s goal of building dreams and connecting students to jobs.” George Kolarov from Banning High School was recognized as ITEP’s Educator of the Year, and Tom Good from Matson received the Bill Stein Memorial Leadership Award.

MATCH and the Los Angeles Harbor College Culinary Arts Programstudents outdid themselves with their dazzling culinary creations. Led by MATCH Advisory Board member Chef Giovanni “Chef Gio” Delrosario, LAHC students delighted the crowd with scrumptious hors d’oeuvres, and MATCH dished up a wonderful pasta dinner with an impressive array of cupcakes and edible arrangements for dessert.

All in all, this year’s event was a stunning success, breaking all previous fundraising records. Thanks to the generous support of our sponsors, ticket takers and silent auction bidders, over $180,000 was raised to support the mission and programs of ITEP. Heartfelt thanks go out to our top sponsors — Port of Los Angeles, Pasha Stevedoring and Terminals, and Metro Ports – as well as to the dedicated members of ITEP’s Dinner Committee, led by Bill Collier, and the ITEP Board and Advisory Boards who devoted countless time and energy toward making this event successful.

 

To view more photos check out our Facebook page!

Video blog story by BNSF Railway

 

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Filed under Banning High School, Barstow High School, Carson High School, Gardena High School, GBAC, GESA, GGLA, GSS, ITA, MATCH, Mojave XP, San Pedro High School, SPEA