‘Project Pipeline’ pours on possibilities in life
French Elementary School students will participate in a day of decision making, character building and learn about the judicial process Friday, April 29, thanks to the Jefferson County Bar Association’s “Pipeline Project.” The diversity program designed to encourage kids to stay in school, develop citizenship skills, gain knowledge of legal processes and procedures, and perhaps one day pursue a legal career.
Joining in making the day possible for the 48 students are Lamar’s College of Arts and Sciences, Lamar Pre-Law Society, and the Department of Political Science, in sponsorship with the Jefferson County Bar Association (JCBA) and Inspire, Encourage, Achieve. (IEA). The activities will take place in the Cardinal Club Room in Lamar’s Montagne Center.
“Angeliqueca Avery (executive director of IEA) and Bonnie Dean (executive director of JCBA) have done an amazing job assembling a team of high-quality legal practitioners, interns and law enforcement officers to make the day both an incredible learning experience and a delight to the students,” said Terri Davis, faculty sponsor of the Pre-Law Society and interim chair of LU’s political science department.
The day will include a “walk-through” of the criminal justice system from arrest to trial with arrest demonstrated by a Beaumont Police Officer, judicial process by a local criminal defense by attorney, and trial procedure by a local judge. IEA graduates and interns will share their experiences of overcoming adversity to excel and aspire toward their life goals, and Phillip Smith and Marco of Beaumont P.D. K-9 will be on-hand to demonstrate narcotics arrest and procedure, Davis said.
“I’ve been astounded by the community spirit displayed in organizing this program,” Davis said. “In a time of economic recession, it’s so affirming to see how elementary school teachers, high school students, Lamar students, police officers, attorneys, judges, and non-profits have stepped up to the plate without any regard for self-promotion or economic compensation. It’s a true testament to the community’s spirit of service, sharing and mentoring.”
Persons interested in volunteering for future collaborative efforts by Lamar University, IEA, and JCBA to ensure educational opportunities and life-skills training for Beaumont area youth are invited to contact Dr. Davis at (409) 880-8533, or Angeliqueca Avery at (409) 839-8778.