Senior Interns with Maryland State Attorney

by Tori Newby ‘22

Senior Makenna Hill, intern at the Family Justice Center, reviews film and takes notes of a criminal trial from the comfort of her own home.

As Sherwood seniors take advantage of half-day schedules to attend various jobs and internships, senior Makenna Hill uses her free afternoons to gain experience in a field in which she hopes to work one day.

Hill interns at the Family Justice Center, which is a part of the state attorney’s office that provides services to create safe domestic environments for families. Attorneys, counselors, detectives, and other employees at the Family Justice Center work to support victims of domestic violence, child abuse, and sexual assault, often aiding in legal battles. With help from an attorney family friend, Hill interviewed over the summer for the position.
Putting in about 15 hours per week, Hill gets flexibility with her internship, choosing to do schoolwork first some days after she gets home from her four-period schedule and completing internship duties first other days. Hill hopes that this experience “will aid in preparation for my future career as a lawyer,” she said.

As an intern, Hill reviews interviews, police body camera videos, and inmate or 911 phone calls to dissect information and take notes for the attorney. She is able to watch some criminal trials as well. “I find the strategies the attorneys use in the courtroom very intriguing,” Hill said, who transcribes and analyzes the recordings of court hearings to assist the attorney in the case. “It ends up being pages worth of notes,” she said.

Compared to TV shows like “Law and Order,” Hill has noticed that real-life trials are much slower-paced, observing how the attorneys frame their questions very thoughtfully in order to focus their arguments. “Lawyers aren’t as hardcore as expected, but they get their job done,” said Hill.
At the Family Justice Center, many employees continue to work remotely, so Hill opted to begin her internship online as well. However, she may attend some in-person trials over the next few months and start going into the office a few times per week. “I am open to going to work in person, and I look forward to it,” said Hill.