The Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project

Marshall Brennan

The Marshall-Brennan Constitutional Literacy Project, named in honor of Supreme Court Justices Thurgood Marshall and William J. Brennan, Jr., is a civic education project which provides law students with real-world classroom experience while teaching at local underserved high schools. Participating students enroll in Education and the Constitution, an advanced constitutional law seminar designed to teach students the substantive constitutional law governing public education. The Marshall-Brennan Project focuses on teaching high school students about the Bill of Rights, while also engaging students in rigorous writing and speaking exercises using real cases and legal materials. The classroom experience culminates in a moot court competition featuring the participating high school students. This project exists in 19 law schools across America and has affiliates in three other countries.

The UNM Chapter of Marshall-Brennan recognizes New Mexico’s unique cultural and ethnic heritage, providing coverage of topics including the interaction of tribal law and the Federal Constitution. The spring of 2012 marked the inaugural semester of the Marshall-Brennan Project at UNM and began with a small group of four teaching Fellows who worked with students from Atrisco Heritage Academy in Albuquerque’s South Valley. Since 2012, the project has grown rapidly, and in the spring of 2014, over thirty students participated in the program, reaching out to hundreds of students at seven schools. In the fall of 2014, the UNM Chapter aims to teach semester-long seminars in several high schools, including Valley High School, West Mesa High School, Amy Biehl High School, Wallatowa High School, and Robert F. Kennedy Charter School. The UNM Chapter will also teach a number of one-time symposiums at local Albuquerque high schools.

For more information about the UNM Chapter

Contact Professor Yael Cannon

For more information about the national program

Visit wcl.american.edu/marshallbrennan

Donate to the Marshall Brennan Project

The Marshall-Brennan Project of the University of New Mexico School of Law seeks support in sending its first team of six public high school students to compete in the National Marshall-Brennan High School Moot Court Competition. Most of the competitors will be the first members of their families to attend college, two of them will be the first competitors of indigenous American descent in the history of the competition, most of them have never been to Washington, DC, and ALL of them are excited to represent the great state of New Mexico in DC! This is an incredibly unique pipeline opportunity in a state that consistently ranks last or next to last in educational outcomes for young people. While the National Marshall-Brennan Program covers some of the costs (including hotel and food), our delegation cannot afford to travel to DC without your support - even small amounts would be very much appreciated and are tax-deductible.

Contact Professor Yael Cannon with questions.

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