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Juris P. Prudence’s assignment – thanking a mentor!

Juris P. Prudence

Hi! Juris Prudence here!  How’s your New Year going?  I hope you did well on your final exams and had a nice holiday break.   My New Year is going really well.  Sofie, Izzie, Maddy, and I spent the holidays celebrating our big victory from last year – winning the legal argument to get kids the right to vote!  It’s back to work for us – attending classes, studying, and working on our next big case! Even though we are already 11 year-old-lawyers, we are still in school, learning how to be even better lawyers!

For our first assignment of the New Year, our school dean, Ms. Smith, asked all students at my school to write a thank you note to someone who has been a mentor to us.  She said that it’s important to always thank the people that have helped you along the way, like your mentors.  My greatest mentor has been Ms. Nicholson, my former  social studies teacher.  She wasn’t an easy teacher, but I learned so much in her class!  Want to see the thank you note that I wrote to her? Take a look!

Dear Ms. Nicholson,

I just want to thank you for being a great mentor to me. I wouldn’t be the lawyer I am today without your guidance.  When I was in law school you gave me many tips on how to be a successful lawyer. You may not remember this, but it’s something that has always stuck with me.  During our final class, you told me and my classmates, “life is too short not to do your best.”  I take that piece of advice everyone I go.

When I was in your class, I made some mistakes, but as a mentor, you always made sure I learned from them.  Remember that time I forgot my homework, and you gave me a detention?  Well, even though that was tough day for me, I learned a lot about responsibility and the importance of submitting my work on time.  Thanks for teaching me that lesson. 

I know I never told you this, but the day that my friends and I argued the case to get kids the right to vote, I was really nervous.  That was such a big case! It meant a lot to me that you came to watch us argue the case and that you told us you were proud of us when we won our case.

You set a great example for me for being a lawyer who is a leader.  I noticed that you volunteered your legal services in your community. I admired that, so I started volunteering too!  You brought me along with you on some cases you were working on.  Every time I watched you practice, I learned so much about working with clients, writing, oral advocacy, and good legal research.

You told me that to be a good lawyer, I must seek out mentors and also serve as a mentor to others.  I don’t know how I can pay you back, but I just want to let you know that I’m going to do everything I can to be a mentor for other law students at our school.  I know that the best gift I can give is to pay it forward. Thank you for showing me what it is to be a great lawyer and a great mentor.


Juris P. Prudence ?

Today, a new student at our school asked me to be her mentor.  Of course I said yes!  Having Ms. Nicholson as my mentor has been the best, and I want to be a great mentor to someone else.  Has anyone been a mentor to you?  Write them a note and let them know you appreciate them.  Gotta go email my mentee! Talk to you soon!

Jessica Childress Jessica Childress is the Managing Attorney of the Childress Firm PLLC in Washington, D.C. and the author of The Briefcase of Juris P. Prudence, a children’s book about the legal adventures of 11-year-old lawyer, Juris P. Prudence. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Government and African American Studies from the University of Virginia and a Juris Doctor from the University of Virginia School of Law. In 2015, she was honored with the National Bar Association’s 40 under 40 Best Advocates Award. Jessica hopes that The Briefcase of Juris P. Prudence will expose more children to the legal profession and encourage their interest in a future career in law.