Clark University's Mock Trial Team is headed to the American Mock Trial Association Sub-National Tournament for the third year in a row; the team was awarded an automatic bid after their outstanding performance at the 2016 New Haven Regional Tournament at Yale University last month.
Two of Clark's teams participated in the regional tournament.
Team A won the bid by achieving a 6-2 record, beating teams from Wesleyan, UMass-Amherst and the University of New Haven, only having lost to Yale. McKenna Hunter '17 won a Best Attorney Award and Ray Carville '17 won a Best Witness Award.
Team B consisted of students who were competing in collegiate Mock Trial for the first time. This novice team earned a record of 2-6, faced tough teams from Wesleyan, UConn and Tufts, and beat a team from Connecticut College.
"The teams rose to the occasion at one of the most competitive regional tournaments in recent memory," said Steven C. Kennedy '88, a practicing attorney who teaches a trial advocacy course in the fall and coaches the Mock Trial teams in the spring. "These students earned their exemplary record through hard work and dedication."
"Despite having a lot of people participating in Mock Trial for the first time, the team did exceptionally well," said Co-captain Emily Art '17. "It goes to show that with lots of dedication and commitment, many of these first time mockers showed skill and poise that you would expect from a veteran."
Co-captain McKenna Hunter '17 said the late-night practices, re-writes, and time spent bonding allowed the team to "grow competitively" and perform well against top teams.
Teams that will be competing at the upcoming sub-national tournament include Yale, Harvard, Brown, Columbia, Boston University, Boston College, Brandeis, Tufts, Williams, Wesleyan, The College of the Holy Cross, Fordham, Vermont, St. John's, and Delaware.
The Mock Trial program is part of Clark's Law & Society Program.
"We are all very proud of our Mock Trial students," said Political Science Professor Mark Miller, who is director of the program. "They all worked very hard for the competition."
In Mock Trial, teams of students analyze and study a legal case during the course of the academic year. The students assume roles of attorneys and witnesses in a trial and engage in trial simulations in competition with teams from other colleges and universities. At a tournament, students are evaluated by a panel of actual attorneys and judges whose scores determine which teams and individuals gave the best performances.
Students who make up Clark's 2016 Mock Trial team rosters include:
McKenna Hunter '17 (captain), Emily Art '17 (captain), Mike Spanos '17, Ray Carville '17, Sarah Maloney '17, Ari Sutcliffe '18, Juliet Michaelsen '19 and Tauren Nelson '19
Team B (all are members of the Class of 2019):
Greg Jones (captain), Joanna Hamilton (captain), Derek Michaud, Jeremy Hirson-Sagalyn, Salma Shawa, Yenifer Cabreja and Rachael Chen
Founded in 1887 in Worcester, Massachusetts, Clark University is a liberal arts-based research university addressing social and human imperatives on a global scale. Nationally renowned as a college that changes lives, Clark is emerging as a transformative force in higher education today. LEEP (Liberal Education and Effective Practice) is Clark's pioneering model of education that combines a robust liberal arts curriculum with life-changing world and workplace experiences. Clark's faculty and students work across boundaries to develop solutions to complex challenges in the natural sciences, psychology, geography, management, urban education, Holocaust and genocide studies, environmental studies, and international development and social change. The Clark educational experience embodies the University's motto: Challenge convention. Change our world.