Written by Aaron Sperbeck
Continuing Birch Horton’s longstanding effort to promote youth involvement and exposure to the legal profession, BHBC attorneys Aaron Sperbeck and Sarah Badten recently hosted a collaborative field trip of 8th grade students from Mears Middle School to visit the Boney and Nesbett Courthouses. The students toured the District and Superior courthouses, interacted with judges and justices from each level of jurisdiction, and witnessed firsthand the process of making sure everyone in the building is safe and secure with the judicial services officers. This experience came only a short time after these students had completed a study module focused on civil rights and legal procedures culminating in the students conducting a mock trial.
During the trip, students heard from several sitting judges and two justices on the Alaska Supreme Court about the importance of respect, decorum, deference, and the value of listening carefully to every litigant who appears before them. The Mears students embraced these lessons and demonstrated excellent behavior and appreciation for the legal institution. Students displayed confidence and honed their public speaking skills by asking questions of the judges from the counsel tables, the podium, and even the jury box.