KU News Release

June 6, 2012
Contact: Mindie Paget, School of Law, 785-864-9205

Kansas high school students begin Journey to J.D. at KU law school camp

More Information

LAWRENCE – Sixteen high school students from across the state of Kansas are getting a taste of law school and careers in the legal profession this week during the third annual Journey to J.D. at the University of Kansas School of Law.

The camp is designed to support, mentor and encourage diverse students entering their junior year of high school to attend college and, ultimately, law school and pursue legal opportunities in the region.

The students experience a rigorous week of studies and travel, beginning with a team-building exercise at the Adams Campus Outdoor Education Center. They spend three full days in the classroom, learning basic legal principles from current law students serving as teaching assistants. During a Tuesday trip to Topeka, the students visited the Brown v. Board of Education site, toured the Capitol and a juvenile correctional facility, and dropped in on the Kansas Judicial Center, where they met with Kansas Appeals Court Judge Karen Arnold-Burger, a 1982 graduate of the law school. They also visited Caleb Stegall, chief counsel to Gov. Sam Brownback and a 2000 graduate of the law school.

The students will network with alumni and other legal professionals during a Wednesday evening barbecue at Green Hall. Kansas City is the destination on Thursday. The students will visit the law school’s Medical-Legal Partnership Clinic, the law firm of Husch Blackwell LLP, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and Sporting Kansas City.

“Each year I look forward to Journey to J.D., and I’m always impressed by the caliber of students who apply,” said Karen Hester, director of student affairs and diversity, who organizes and oversees the camp as program director. “From my early meetings with the current campers, I know that we’ll have an excellent program again this year.”

The law school’s alumni Diversity Council devised the idea for Journey to J.D., its version of the kinds of “pipeline” programs popularly employed by law schools and the legal profession to diversify legal education and the workforce. Professor Melanie Wilson, associate dean for academic affairs, serves as faculty adviser for the camp.

Major corporate sponsors of the 2012 camp include the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation, Husch Blackwell LLP and Walmart.

High school students attending are listed below by hometown and high school:

From Baxter Springs 66713
Mason Williams, Baxter Springs High School

From Clay Center 67432
Desirrae Zachgo, Wakefield High School

From Baldwin City 66006
Morgan Linder, Baldwin High School

From Overland Park 66210
Natalie Cabell, Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy

From Overland Park 66062
Hannah Leiker, Saint Thomas Aquinas High School

From Overland Park 66221
Annie Schugart, Saint Thomas Aquinas High School

From Shawnee 66216
Grace Gregory, Shawnee Mission Northwest High School

From Stilwell 66085
Daniel Vandervoort, Blue Valley High School

From Erie 66733
Jenna Johnson, Erie High School

From Wamego 66547
Cody Totten, Wamego High School

From Wichita 67220
Lyndon Breckenridge, Wichita Heights High School

From Wichita 67206
Caleb Maine, Trinity High School

From Wichita 67203
Kristen Stinnett, Wichita West High School

From Topeka 66610
Carleigh Frazier, Washburn Rural High School

From Topeka 66616
Gracie Ortega, Hayden High School

From Kansas City 66109
Danielle Moore, Washington High School


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