Thursday, August 8, 2013

Back to School: ASL's Award Winning Moot Court, Mock Trial, and ADR Teams

As noted in prior posts, I am using this week to brag about the Appalachian School of Law.  Today, I want to focus on our championship competition teams.

Moot Court Program

Students from the Appalachian School of Law routinely excel in nationally-known moot court competitions. These appellate advocacy competitions pit ASL students against teams from the top 50 schools.  

At the Wechsler National Criminal Law Competition, ASL has won more awards than any other school in the history of the competition -- including two national championships, two final-round appearances, five Best Advocate awards, four semi-final round appearances, and two brief writing awards.  

In the spring 2013 National Environmental Law Moot Court Competition (NELMCC), the ASL team advanced all the way to the final round -- out of 76 teams.  After three preliminary rounds, ASL was one of 27 teams that advanced to the quarterfinals.  One team member was honored as a Top Oralist for the preliminary rounds.

With 76 teams, the NELMCC purports to be the largest moot court competition in the country, and it is almost certainly the most prestigious one that focuses on environmental law issues.  The competition includes teams from Harvard, Michigan, Columbia, Georgetown, and many other decorated law schools. 

For all competitions, not just Wechsler and NELMCC, ASL has established the following impressive record:

  • National Champion Team -- twice
  • Finalist Team -- twice
  • Semi-final Team -- seven times
  • Quarter-final Team -- twelve times
  • Best Advocate -- five times
  • Best Brief -- twice
  • Best Competitor -- once
We have established ASL as the team to beat!

For more information about our Moot Court program, contact Professor Judie Barger.

Mock Trial Program

The American Association for Justice (formerly the American Trial Lawyers Association) sponsors an annual, national competition focused on trial advocacy skills.  

In the Spring 2011 competition, students from the Appalachian School of Law placed in the top four teams.  In the Spring 2012 competition, our students placed in the top five teams.  Both years, ASL successfully competed against teams from Tier 1 schools. 

For more information about the Mock Trial program, contact Professor Tom Scott, its faculty adviser. 

Competitions Involving Alternative Dispute Resolution Skills   

The Law Student Division of the American Bar Association sponsors the annual, national Negotiation Competition, which -- as its name indicates -- focuses on negotiation skills.  Over 180 teams participate in the intra-school, regional, and national-level competitions.

The last time Appalachian School of Law sent teams to the competition, one ASL team tied for 11th place nationwide at the national-level competition.  They out-performed teams from Georgetown, Emory University, University of San Diego, University of Tulsa, University of Hastings, Texas Tech, University of Houston, and the University of British Columbia.  They also out-performed by five points the team from the University of Missouri-Columbia, which had -- at that time -- the top-ranked ADR program in the United States.  

ASL has also participated in the Representation in Mediation Competition sponsored by the Section of Dispute Resolution of the American Bar Association.  It typically attracts 80 to 100 teams across the country.

The last time ASL sent a team to compete, the team entered the final round of the regional competition with the highest point total of any participating team for the two preceding rounds of the competition.  After the final round, the ASL team placed second in the overall competition.

That year, ninety teams competed at ten regional competitions nationwide. Thus, ASL’s second-place finish in its regional competition put it among the top 18 teams nationwide.

For more information about the ADR-related competitions, contact Assistant Professor Kendall Isaac.  

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