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McGeorge Mock Trial Team

The McGeorge Mock Trial team of Adriana Garcia, Chelsea Givens, Simone Leighty and Allison Wieder won first place in the 2018 National Civil Trial Competition.

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Pacific News

McGeorge Mock Trial Team wins National Civil Trial Championship

Nov 21, 2018

McGeorge School of Law's Mock Trial team of Allison Wieder, Chelsea Givens, Simone Leighty and Adriana Garcia bested some of the top teams in the nation to win the 17th-annual National Civil Trial Competition (NCTC), held Nov. 9–11, 2018. Second-year law student Leighty also won the Best Advocate award in both the preliminary and final rounds of the tournament. The team won five consecutive rounds with 18 out of 20 scoring judges awarding them the "win" votes over the three days of competition. Second-year law student Simone Leighty won the Best Advocate award in both the preliminary and final rounds of the tournament. 

Eighteen teams representing some of the best Mock Trial programs in the country were invited to participate in the NCTC. The competition involved 72 law student litigants representing their schools on teams of four. The three-day competition was held at the Santa Monica Courthouse and Loyola Law School. In the final round, Leighty and Garcia, also a second-year student, faced Stetson University College of Law and emerged victoriously.

The subject of this year's civil case involved a college student who suffers from paranoid schizophrenia who, without provocation, violently attacked a classmate on campus. The students acted as advocates/witnesses to perform opening statements, conduct direct- and cross-examination of expert and lay witnesses, make closing arguments and argue objections based on the Federal Rules of Evidence. Each team argued their case in front of a panel of judges consisting of prestigious members of the Southern California bar. 

"I was blown away by the students' high-level litigation skills and determination," said Mark Quigley, a partner at Greene Broillet & Wheeler LLP and a member of the judges' panel. "We're honored to have played a role in this exciting and dynamic competition."

The McGeorge team was coached by alumni Keith Hill '96 and Thien Ho '98. Professor Cary Bricker directs the McGeorge Mock Trial program. The award-winning McGeorge Moot Court and Mock Trial Competition Programs, directed by the Center for Advocacy & Dispute Resolution, provide numerous opportunities for students to expand their courtroom experience, improve appellate advocacy skills, and refine their skills in client counseling, negotiation and arbitration.

Students receive coaching and practice in specific trial skills and each year, are able to test their abilities in competitions across the nation and around the world in such diverse subject areas as international law, constitutional law, criminal procedure, intellectual property, and more.

McGeorge teams consistently perform among the top in competition. Earlier this month, the Moot Court Team took First Place, Best Brief, and Best Oralist in the West Coast Regional Moot Court Competition. In June of this year, the McGeorge team garnered a world championship representing the United States in the International Negotiation Competition held in Wales, UK. 

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