Program helps students learn about the legal system

High school students can experience this summer what it’s like to argue a case before the Michigan Supreme Court, thanks to a program being offered by the court’s Learning Center. 

Rachael Drenovsky, the Learning Center’s coordinator, explained 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,” said Drenovsky. 

“Combining succinct, crisp writing with dynamic verbal expression are two essential skills that attorneys need,” said Justice Richard H. Bernstein, the court’s liaison to the center. 

The experience, he said, “is sure to help young participants sharpen those skills.”

“Actually, those skills are requisite in any profession; participating in the summer program will benefit students regardless of the direction they take after high school,” he added. 

The moot court case involves police entering the backyard of a suspected marijuana grow house without a warrant. 

Participants will discuss protections the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides and whether these actions, which led to the issuance of a search warrant, were constitutional. 

Participants will meet and work with attorneys and other legal professionals.

Presenters will include members of the judiciary.

The program will be held at the Michigan Hall of Justice in Lansing. 

“Exploring Careers in the Law” is open to students entering grades 10 through 12 in fall 2016 and 2016 graduates. 

Participants meet July 18–22 from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. each day. 

The application deadline is May 27. 

The registration fee is a $75 donation to the Michigan Supreme Court Historical Society Learning Center Fund. 

Registration is limited to 22 participants, selected on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Contact Rachael Drenovsky at or 517.373.5027.