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District attorney visits law classroom

On Oct. 25, Santa Clara County District Attorney (D.A.) Jeffrey Rosen visited social studies teacher Patricia Holmes’ Law 1 class. Students were invited to ask questions for the majority of the period after he gave an outline on his duties and road to becoming a lawyer.

Although Rosen was elected as the D.A. in 2010, his career in the D.A.’s office started in 1995 as one of  the county’s 185 deputy district attorneys. Since then, he has gone a long way from investigating misdemeanors to his final case in 2010 related tomurder.

As the D.A., Rosen no longer participates directly as a prosecutor. Instead, he now manages the office and overviews some 30,000 criminal cases each year.  Some of his chief duties include communication with the general public, signing warrants, and being the final shot caller on cases involving murder or government officials. Since he began, Rosen has instituted two new units—the Cold Case Unit and the nationally acclaimed Conviction Integrity Unit—and has constantly worked to improve public safety. “We are working to protect the public and we are always trying to be more efficient,” he said.

For those who want to become lawyers, Rosen encouraged students to be open-minded and to work hard. “If you’re interested, look for mentors, they can teach you a great deal,” he said. “Getting help in the LSAT will help as well.”

Junior Dylan Thomas appreciated the D.A.’s visit, noting that it was very inspirational despite wanting to go into a different field of law. “It gave me more substance to back my interest with,” he said.

Holmes was very grateful and excited that the D.A. was able to come.  “The fact that we got the District Attorney of Santa Clara County to stop his day to come to Gunn High School is an opportunity I hope the students can truly take advantage of,” Holmes said. “The students had so much to say on the thank-you card they wrote.”

In addition to hosting Rosen, the Law 1 class recently had a visit from Santa Clara County Judge Thomas Kuhnle.  The class also visited the site of the 9th Circuit Court of A

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ppeals in San Francisco.

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