Are you in high school and interested in law?

Caitlin Crosby had an interest in law in high school and now she is a student in the Paralegal program at Durham College (DC) where she is learning to give legal advice and represent clients in court.  Caitlin really liked her grade 12 law class, and had a chance to participate in a high school mock trial.  Now that she is about to graduate from DC, she wanted to help high school students with their mock trials.

As a result, Caitlin was on hand with DC earlier this month to assist with mock trials at the Newmarket Courthouse. Students came from 24 high schools and competed by conducting mock trials before judges in the Superior Court of Justice.  Caitlin talked with students about her DC experience, specifically about studying to be a paralegal licensee of the Law Society of Upper Canada.  .

According to Caitlin, her high school mock trial helped her to choose law at DC.  “My interest in law began in high school during my law class and my mock trial.  It led me to study law full time at Durham College.  I am really looking forward to graduating and when I will be able to become a professional licensee of the Law Society of Upper Canada.  I know I can make a real difference by giving my clients good legal advice and by helping them in court, and it’s thanks to the incredible lawyers and paralegals teaching me at Durham College.”

This year, Dalton Burger, Paralegal professor, formed part of the panel of dignitaries comprised of the senior regional chief justice of Ontario, crown attorney for York Region, superintendent of York Region Police, and the York Region chairman and CEO.  Mr. Burger said, “I am so proud of our Durham College students, like Caitlin, who not only work hard in their legal studies but also take time to help others in our community to develop their interest in law.”

The winner of this tournament will advance to the Ontario Central East Regional Championship on Tuesday, May 16th at the Oshawa Courthouse.  The mock trials were created to help high school students develop their interest in the legal field, while exposing them to a fully integrated, hands-on experiences. Thanks to Caitlin and DC paralegal students, that participated in the event, we are sure to see many more students follow in their footsteps. DC supports the event through Nicole Gilkes from Student Recruitment and Admission services.

DC’s Paralegal program is accredited by The Law Society of Upper Canada (Law Society), the regulatory body governing professional paralegals in the province. The program prepares students for the Law Society’s paralegal licensing examination, enabling them to provide legal services within authorized areas of law practice and represent clients before small claims court, criminal court (summary convictions), provincial offences court and government tribunals.