CHARLESTON – A group of West Virginia’s most-gifted students recently came face-to-face with some state leaders they one day could succeed.
The Roane-Jackson Technical School’s legal studies class recently took in oral arguments heard by the state Supreme Court as part of their reward as 2017 winners of the West Virginia Law Adventure competition on May 2.
Chief Justice Allen H. Loughry II was among those on hand to meet and greet the honorees, presenting the winners with a plaque in recognition of their achievement.
“Whenever they come here, students always seem to be interested and engaged in the process,” West Virginia Public Education Officer Jennifer Bundy told The West Virginia Record of the program. “And it never fails that we get a few of them who tell us the experience has made them want to someday become lawyers.”
Students qualify for the program by penning their own mock trial scripts based on one of three criminal case scenarios annually written and presented to them by the Young Lawyers Section of the West Virginia State Bar.
The class is also required to act out the script before either a magistrate, a family court judge or circuit court judge, during which time they are also presented handbooks to study the court system and the specific case they may hear.
“The selected students get to see the court officers in action and how they work first-hand,” said Bundy. “It’s the kind of experience that stays with you a lifetime.”
The program is open to schools and students across the state and the lawyers who participate volunteer their time and expertise to the program.
All five Supreme Court justices also participate in the program, with Bundy stressing the judges are convinced the experience will go a long way in helping to rear generations of well-informed, patriotic citizens.
“It’s a win-win program for everyone involved and one that greatly serves to keep many of our young people motivated,” added Bundy.