The Justice Society plans on organizing seven successful projects this year, four of which are already in progress. The Society, revamped under a new name and student leadership, wants to grow and evolve into a larger more recognizable presence on campus for all majors.
History junior Martin Calderon, president of the Justice Society, believes that if you don’t know what to do, you should dive into the service of others as a way of finding out what you want to do in life.
The Justice Society began as the Pre-Law Society. As a result of low student engagement, Calderon and his vice president, Jacklin Benites, revised the group’s constitution and changed its name. The goal was to offer a more accessible theme of giving any issue of justice a platform on campus and exploring public service professions.
“Our mission, first and foremost, is to spread public service and spread information to others, but also to get students that experiential learning concept of college,” Calderon said.
JagSync, the information portal for student organizations, states the organization “explores all professions of public service.” But students will want to know more.
“What can we do for you?” Calderon asked. “First and foremost, we can bolster your resume.”
Calderon said members are more than welcome to find events, opportunities, and other organizations they want to work with and spearhead a coordination effort.
The Justice Society recently worked with the Esperanza Peace and Justice Center, helping staff with their Paseo Por El Westside event. The event was dedicated to cultural preservation on the Westside.
According to Calderon, as the city develops, it forgets about the culture and roots of the Westside and that is what the Esperanza Peace and Justice want to combat. These are the types of projects the Justice Society looks to be a part of.
The Justice Society wants to organize seven successful projects this year, four of which are already in progress.
- PEARLS Court Campus Visit on Oct. 8th
- The National Association of Women Judges Banquet
- The Esperanza Peace and Justice Center Peace Market
- The Justice Society Speaker Series
The PEARLS Court visit was the first project the organization worked on this semester.
PEARLS Court is a therapeutic court system led by Judge Renée Yanta at the 150th district court in Bexar County. They take in young women from the foster care system between the ages of 14 and 18 and provide them with opportunities of mentorship, therapy and experiences.
The Justice Society hosted these young women for a day on the Texas A&M University-San Antonio campus. The girls experienced a mock classroom taught by political science professor Amanda Gatewood and presentations by the admissions office and the Mays Center for Experiential Learning and Community Engagement.
They also listened to speeches delivered by Calderon, Student Government Association president Marissa Lyssy; vice president Katherine Riley; and Jaguar Ambassador Mercedes Ayala-Starnes.
“We’re going to bring in the Mays Center of Experiential Learning and Community Engagement, we’re going to bring in the Admissions Office, and University Advancement is helping us with the catering and food,” Calderon said.
The Justice Society wants to grow and evolve into a larger more recognizable presence on campus. The Justice Society is for everyone, not just criminology majors.
“I don’t want people to think that Justice Society is just geared towards one profession,” Benites said. “They can literally use it with whatever they decide to do in the future.”
Secretary Xavier Gomez said student’s willingness to challenge themselves can be beneficial.
“I want people to know that [the Justice Society is] good for you, not just in the long-run, but for the time being too,” Gomez said. “I don’t wanna sound too gung-ho, you know like ‘Do all you can, fill every waking minute!’ I know it’s tough, but, you know, it’s good for you too.”
Calderon wants students to know that no matter what they believe, what side of the political spectrum they’re on, no matter what they believe in, there is always an open door at the Justice Society.
“We are here to make the Texas A&M-San Antonio community, the Southside and, most likely, the state of Texas a better place.