3rs programProgram Summary 

The 3Rs: Rights, Responsibilities, Realities 


The 3Rs Program is a partnership between the Grand Rapids Bar Association and the Grand Rapids Public Schools. It calls upon a team of volunteers to go to social studies classrooms for eight separate sessions, between October and May, of each school year to work with small groups of students to accomplish the following goals:

  • Improve understanding of and respect for the rule of law and our Constitution
  • Increase interest in civic and governmental issues
  • Provide practical career counseling to focus students on their potential beyond high school
  • Improve the "pipeline" of minorities flowing into the legal profession

3Rs program volunteers, from the Grand Rapids legal community, visit 9th grade social studies classes throughout the school year. The program, funded by the Grand Rapids Managing Partners’ Diversity Collaborative, is based upon the award-winning model put forward by the Cleveland Bar Association.

What We Do

The 2021-2022 academic year will be the eight year for the 3Rs Program in Grand Rapids, and will focus on University Preparatory Academy. Roughly once a month, from October to May, in coordination with school programming, a team of five lawyers will enter each 9th Grade social studies class for one 55-minute class period. Each class will be divided into subgroups of 4-5 students, led by a lawyer/law student team member who will apply a curriculum based upon the one developed by the Cleveland Bar Association. Students’ work in the 3Rs Program will count towards their final grade, and the participating attorneys/law students will have a voice in that grade. Our goal is to expand the program into every 9th Grade Social Studies class in the Grand Rapids Public Schools system, in the future.

Your Commitment

We estimate that the commitment of an average team member would be approximately two to three hours per month for a period of nine months. That commitment will begin at the September orientation. In October, you will enter the school for a 55-minute class roughly once a month and your commitment will consist of preparation, travel to University Preparatory Academy and attending your assigned class period. Also, you will shoulder an ongoing commitment to mentor any students with whom you form a connection, which will continue through their high school education and beyond.


We are still looking for area legal professionals and students, attending law school, who are interested in making a difference. If you are interested in volunteering in, please contact

kenneth@grbar.org. You may complete an attorney faculty application, by clicking here. Law students may complete a student faculty application, by clicking here.


Attend an Orientation and Cultural Competency Training

Each respective orientation and cultural competency training session contains identical content. In order to accommodate the busy schedules of our volunteers, we have elected to conduct multiple training at varying times.



Orientation - Session I: September 22, 2021 | 7:30 - 9:30 a.m. 


Orientation - Session II: September 23, 2021 | 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. 


Cultural Competency Training - Session I: October 6, 2021 | 7:30 - 9:30 a.m.


Cultural Competency Training - Session II: October 7, 2021 | 4:00 - 6:00 p.m.



Volunteer  Resources

2021-2022 Attorney Faculty Application

2021-2022 Student Faculty Application

Volunteer Guidelines and Suggestions

Click here to sign-in to your GRBA member account to review supplemental resources for the 3RS Program.