Deer Park High School’s Katia Papailler was one of just 20 students recently accepted into the St. John’s University School of Law’s sports law summer program, run in affiliation with the NBA G League’s Long Island Nets and WNBA’s New York Liberty and supported by the Brooklyn Nets and New York Liberty Foundation.
Now in its third year, the program – which seeks to increase diversity in the legal profession – was held for the first time at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Guest speakers included Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business Associate Professor of Law and Ethics Mark Conrad and University California Los Angeles School of Law Critical Race Studies Project Director Taifha Alexander.
Throughout the course, led by Ronald H. Brown Center of Civil Rights Faculty Director Elaine Chiu, students participated in daily classes where they learned about sports law, civil rights, careers in the legal field, the business of sports, networking, financial literacy, and college admissions. They also participated in community engagement activities focused on social justice and a concluding mock trial experience.
“The eight-day program was a great experience,” Papailler said. “I learned so much and it really helped me figure out my path for the future. Next time I have a college discussion with my counselor, I will know much more about what I want to do. I learned what it takes to be in law school and how to network with all the people I meet. This really made my summer and is a core memory of something I have completed in my life.”