Daniel LaTerra of our firm has been involved in a Mentorship program at the Academies, where he spent time with two young women hoping to get involved in law. We asked these two women to share their experiences with us as a way to honor their time spent and the wonderful experiences these bright ladies had, as well as what they will take with them for the future. The Mentorship Program was especially important to LaTerra and our firm because we believe in a strong investment in the community and inviting great young minds to learn from us. Being involved in the community strengthens the bonds we have with the people we care about and wish to see excel in their own personal lives.
Genesis Guzman, a seventeen-year-old interested in the law field from a young age, mentored with Daniel LaTerra recently. She has an interest in law because of her desire to protect the rights of citizens, something she holds very near and dear to her heart. Because of this, four years ago she applied to the Law & Public Academy at the Academies at Englewood to further her interest. Throughout high school, she continued to pursue her desires in law by studying the basics of law, criminal law, constitutional law, and issues in law and public policy.
Genesis found out about Maggiano, DiGirolamo & Lizzi through somebody who had interned with us in previous years. After she had interviewed for an internship at the firm, she knew right away that this was the firm she wanted to intern at more than anything. Throughout her experience, Genesis learned many new things she never knew before, including what it was like to work in a professional environment. She also learned about personal injury law, which changed her views on day-to-day activities such as driving, where you must prepare for anything. Genesis has stated that she noticed that the firm “always made their clients their priority.” After her experience, she decided that becoming an attorney only made more sense to her and that she can see herself doing this in the future.
Daniel LaTerra has learned from Genesis just as she has learned from him. She believes that he is one of the most influential and helpful mentors that she could have asked for and was always easy to approach, making her experience that much more enjoyable.
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Jillian Royal was also part of the Mentorship Program at the Academies. She is currently a high school senior at the Academies at Englewood with a desire to pursue a degree in Justice Studies with a concentration in International Justice from the Montclair State University Honors Program. Jillian decided that she was going to become involved in law when she was only 12 years old in sixth grade when she first attended one of the Academies at Englewood Open Houses and saw a presentation for the Law and Public Safety Academy. When she participated in the Juvenile Conference Committee, these ideas were only strengthened and she decided that law was definitely for her.
Jillian completed her internship at the Superior Court of New Jersey of Bergen County, an internship opportunity created for seniors in high school to experience the actual law work field. Her senior experience coordinator insisted that she applied for a position at the courthouse and, to her surprise, she landed the position and was more excited than ever! She has spoken about her experience and stated that she was extremely grateful to have this new experience to be able to interact with litigants, lawyers, and judges. She was also able to listen to numerous court cases because there was always an abundance of cases on the Judge’s calendar. One of the most important things she learned throughout her internship, she says, was learning how to help litigants fill out the necessary forms needed to have their cases heard.
These two young ladies full of future opportunity and spirit in the law field have made the best out of their experiences and truly believe that this will give them the boost they need to work in the law field in the years to come. We wish them all the best!