In her scholarship application essay, CCAC student Katie Picciano said that during the COVID-19 pandemic, the courts relied more heavily on technology, which ‘exposed weaknesses in the courts as well as in society as a whole.’
By Ashlee Green
Katie Picciano, a court reporting student at Pittsburgh’s Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC) has been recognized by the National Court Reporter Foundation (NCRF) for her high academic achievements.
Picciano, who was nominated by CCAC and has completed the internship portion of her schooling, is this year’s winner for the NSRF Student Intern Scholarship. The $1,000 scholarship is given out every year in order to, according to a press release, “ensure that rising student court reporters and newly appointed court reporters receive encouragement and incentives to learn and strive for excellence.”
Picciano’s scholarship application essay responded to the question, “What has your student intern experience taught you about this profession in a post-COVID world?” She cited, according to the press release, “an increased reliance on technology” and how it “exposed weaknesses in the courts as well as in society as a whole.”
Court reporters, according to The Association for Court Reporters and Captioners (NCRA) website, are “highly trained professionals who share a unique ability to convert the spoken word into information that can be read, searched, and archived.” They complete “word-for-word transcriptions at trials, depositions, and other legal proceedings,” reports the Long Island Business news, and right now, there’s a nationwide shortage of them.
“My teachers and classmates at CCAC, my National Court Reporters Association mentor, and all the professional court reporters I have met during my internship have been genuine and encouraging,” Picciano said in the press release. “They kept me motivated to stay on track to graduate in less than two years during a pandemic.”
Picciano’s official court reporter career will start this month at West Chester, Pa.’s Chester County Courthouse.