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Law Day contest focuses on diversity

Posted by Michele Morgan Bolton  February 3, 2010 08:14 AM

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Amateur filmmakers have a chance at winning as much as a $1,000 scholarship for college by shooting a one- to three-minute video on diversity in the law and showing the winning works at a gathering in Dedham in the spring.

The video essay contest sponsored by the Massachusetts Bar Association is open to high school students around the state.

Winners will receive $1,000 for first place, $500 for second place, and $250 for honorable mention, and be invited, with their families, to attend a special ceremony and screening of their videos during the association's House of Delegates meeting at the Hilton Hotel in Dedham on May 19.

The event and contest celebrate Law Day, recognized nationally each May 1 to reflect on the importance of law and its effect on the country and society.

“We chose the Diversity in the Law theme because it likely means different things to different people," said Norfolk Probate and Family Court Justice Angela N. Ordonez. "We are excited to review the submissions of the various interpretations of this year's theme."

Ordonez is the cochairwoman of the association’s Diversity Task Force, which is providing funding for the winning scholarships. The Norfolk Probate and Family Court is in Dedham.

The contest is open to students in grades nine through 12 who live in Massachusetts and attend schools in the state. To enter, they must complete an online entry form at http://www.MassBar.org/videocontest, post their original family-friendly video (no copyrighted material) to YouTube.com by 5 p.m. on April 1, and mail a high-quality copy to the MBA, 20 West St. Boston, MA 02111-1204.

“The contest is a wonderful opportunity for students to expound upon their
understanding and interpretation of the law,” said Marc C. Laredo, who serves as co-chairman of the MBA Law Day Committee with Michael P. Sams. “Far too often youth are not exposed to the legal community’s role in society until late teenage years or beyond. This contest will be a positive introduction for many.”

A panel of four judges, including MBA president Valerie A. Yarashus and Ordonez, will select the winning entries based on originality, creativity, adherence to the theme, and overall quality.

For more details on the contest, go to http://www.MassBar.org/videocontest.

Michele Morgan Bolton can be reached at mmbolton1@verizon.net.

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