Programs for Youth and Schools

The San Diego County Bar Association (SDCBA) understands the importance of maintaining a connection with students and helping to foster an understanding and interest in the legal community.  Many of our members also enjoy working with San Diego’s youth and give their time through some of the SDCBA’s various youth related service programs.  Some of the programs the SDCBA facilitates that directly involve local schools include:

Student Civics Engagement Academy

The San Diego County Bar Association and San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce are pleased to announce the launch of a new initiative for upcoming high school seniors: the Student Civics Engagement Academy.

Most experts agree that civic learning helps teach our youth the necessary skills needed for the 21st century workplace, including critical thinking, problem solving, communication, collaboration, creativity, initiative and entrepreneurism. Today civics and citizenship means more than understanding the roles of government and voting in elections. It means making sense of local, national, and global events, trends and information, and acting safely, responsibly and ethically in online forums. Citizenship requires a wide range of knowledge, 21st century skills and experiences for effective and productive participation in education and the workplace, in democratic processes and in community life. This week long instensive will run from June 19-23, 2017. It covers critical skills of civics, civic engagement and how those skills are used in the workplace. Participants meet and interact with business leaders, lawyers, judges, elected officials and civics leaders in this one-of-a kind program. 

Law Week Poster & Video Contest

This annual event involves school children in our Law Week celebration and generates excitement toward the justice system. Children in kindergarten through sixth grade are eligible to participate in the Poster Contest, while students in grades 6 through 12 can enter the Video Contest.  Entries are normally due in March with awards presented at the annual Law Week luncheon on May 1, 2019. A cash prize is awarded to three entries in each of the two contests.  Contest winners will be announced in mid-April. To learn about the Poster & Video Contest, contact Michelle Chavez, at Click here for the contest theme and learn more here

High School Mock Trial Competition

The Mock Trial Competition, which takes place each January/February, places high school students in a simulated courtroom setting where they assume the roles of lawyers and witnesses in a hypothetical case. The winning team goes on to represent San Diego County at the California Mock Trial Finals in March. As part of the program, area lawyers volunteer to serve as coaches and scorers for the competition and Superior Court Judges and Commissioners preside over the mock trials. The competition serves to promote a greater understanding of and appreciation for the law, court procedures and the American judicial system.  It also offers students a real-life opportunity to challenge and improve basic life skills such as critical thinking, reading, public speaking and advocacy for ideas. If you are interested in volunteering please contact Michelle Chavez at or 619-321-4150.  For more information on the Mock Trial program please visit 

Attorneys in the Classroom

Planning a lesson on the judicial branch of government or celebrating Constitution Day?  Our members are eager, able and willing to come to your classroom and speak with students on a variety of topics.  To find out about arranging for an attorney to speak to your classroom, contact