Judicial Youth Corps returns to Springfield under MBA/SJC partnership

Thursday, Jun. 12, 2014
Article Picture
Photo Credit: Mike Vigneux
From left: High School of Commerce Principal Jason Hynek; Assistant Superintendent of Springfield Public Schools Lydia Martinez; newly sworn-in Springfield Judicial Youth Corps students from the High School of Commerce, Roger L. Putnam Vocational Technical Academy and Springfield Central High School, with Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Roderick L. Ireland; and Attorney Debra Lord, a High School of Commerce teacher

The Supreme Judicial Court's Judicial Youth Corps program returns to Springfield this summer after a 13-year absence in the city. The program teaches public and private high school students about the judicial branch of government and fundamental principles of law.

In collaboration with the SJC, the Massachusetts Bar Association will administer both the Springfield and Worcester Judicial Youth Corps programs. The Springfield program was developed through a partnership with the SJC, the MBA and Western New England University School of Law.

SJC Chief Justice Roderick L. Ireland, an advisor and ardent supporter of the Judicial Youth Corps program since its inception, marked the return of the Springfield program on June 6 at the High School of Commerce, where he administered an oath to 10 Springfield-area students

The SJC has operated the Judicial Youth Corps program in Boston continuously since 1991. The expansion of the Judicial Youth Corps program to Springfield marks the second time the MBA has helped grow the Judicial Youth Corps program beyond its Boston roots. In 2007, the MBA, in cooperation with the SJC, expanded the highly successful program to the city of Worcester. The Worcester program benefits from the financial support of the MBA's philanthropic partner, the Massachusetts Bar Foundation.

Between May and June, students in both Springfield and Worcester will take part in educational sessions over the course of six weeks, which will orient them on the court system and the law. In July and August, students participate in paid internships in the court system over another six-week period.

More than 700 students in Massachusetts have participated in Judicial Youth Corps since its inception.