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Queens Chronicle

SCHOOL SPOTLIGHT Hillcrest High School Student Profile

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Posted: Friday, November 8, 2019 12:15 am

Last summer, Allison Patino, a senior at Hillcrest High School in Jamaica, who lives in East Elmhurst, attended the Sonia & Celina Sotomayor 2019 Summer Judicial Internship Program along with 49 other high school students, an event named after United States Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. She was able to attend this prestigious activity because last year her software teacher in the Public Service & Law Institute in Hillcrest High School gave the class an assignment to research internships available to high school students. She did such a good job doing the research that she found about this internship herself. She applied and, with the guidance of Public Service & Law Institute Director Ms. Salima Kahn, was accepted.

Attending this institute was a mind-changing activity for this 16-year-old of Ecuadorian immigrant. She was assigned to Judge Carmen Velasquez of the Queens County Supreme Court where she attended morning motions, sat through Justice Velasquez’ hearings and those of other justices, wrote summaries for motions, became involved in Ecuadorian activities such as an Ecuadorian march in August the Justice was involved with, answered phone calls, was able to make an appearance on Telemundo in a special episode Justice Velasquez took part in, met officials from the Ecuadorian government and witnessed the hearings for the recount of the recent Queens district attorney election. At the end of the program she met with Justice Sonia Sotomayor herdself.

Through her Public Service & Law Institute, Patino has attended Friday Seminars sponsored by the Internship Organizers at the Thurgood Marshall Courthouse, attended a college essay-writing workshop, attended a legal research workshop, visited Bloomberg where she talked to workers about their paths to the positions they hold in the company and attended a seminar by the Bloomberg Legal Department about their jobs, attended college admissions workshops, and attended seminars with federal judges and a U.S. Marshall. She has attended the High School Law Institute at Columbia University for the past 2 years on weekends.

Academically, Patino took Advanced Placement college-Level classes in world history, Spanish, government and politics, and calculus plus took college credit courses with York College in Caribbean History, Finance 101, and psychology and also an English-writing class through Queensborough Community College. Her plans are to major in computer science or digital forensics in college and minor in Political science then attend law school. It goes to show what goes on in our Queens high schools. 

If you would like to be featured on a School Spotlight page, call Lisa LiCausi, Education Coordinator, at (718) 205-8000, Ext. 110. Online go to qchron.com/schoolnews.

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