Michigan students to get a chance to 'argue' before state Supreme Court

Michigan Supreme Court seal

Michigan Supreme Court seal

State of Michigan

This summer, high school students can experience what it’s like to argue a case before the Michigan Supreme Court (MSC), thanks to “Exploring Careers in the Law,” a popular program presented by the MSC Learning Center.

The Learning Center has extended the deadline for applications to June 17. Modified to a remote format during the past two years, the program returns to an in-person format that will take place this July at the Michigan Hall of Justice in Lansing.

“We are so pleased to be back in person for this wonderful program because the students really get so much out of the personal exchanges with their peers, the mentor attorneys, and the expert presenters,” said Justice Richard H. Bernstein, MSC liaison to the Learning Center. “Helping these future lawyers develop essential professional skills, get a feel for the practice of law, and learn about the judiciary is why this program is so worthwhile.”

Learning Center Coordinator Rachael L. Drenovsky said the program features participation in a “moot court” in which participants prepare and argue a case.

“The goal is to have participants learn about the legal system, and sharpen the skills a good lawyer needs: reasoning, writing and oral presentation,” she said.

The moot court, which will take place 9 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. July 18–22, features a free speech case in which a high school student is disciplined by school officials for a message on social media. Working with attorneys and other legal professionals, participants will argue and decide whether the 1st Amendment applies to students using social media while off-campus. The program will culminate with oral arguments on the final day. Program presenters will include members of the judiciary.

“Exploring Careers in the Law” is open to students entering grades 10 through 12 in fall 2022, as well as 2022 graduates. Registration is limited and participants are selected on a first-come, first-served basis. The registration fee is a $75 donation to the Michigan Supreme Court Historical Society Learning Center Fund.

For more information, contact Rachael Drenovsky at 517-373-5027 or drenovskyr@courts.mi.gov.