WASHINGTON, PA (Feb. 12, 2013)—Two dozen teams from colleges and universities from across the country, including a host squad from Washington & Jefferson College (W&J), competed in the Founding Fathers Mock Trial Association regional competition Feb. 8-10 in Old Main and the Howard J. Burnett Center at W&J.
Teams participating in the courtroom competition included California University of Pennsylvania, The Ohio State University, University of Pittsburgh, University of Cincinnati, University of Michigan, Carnegie Mellon University, Howard University, Miami University, Kenyon College, Kent State University, Case Western Reserve University, Cornell University, Xavier University, Eastern Michigan University and Michigan State University.
The opening ceremony of the regional was held Feb. 8 in the Old Main Chapel. Activities then moved to the “courthouse” in the Burnett Center, where the competition began. Trials continued the following day, Feb. 9, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Feb. 10 from 9 a.m.-noon. The awards ceremony followed in the Old Main Chapel, Watterson added.
According to W&J Mock Trial Team President Luke Watterson, the team benefits from W&J’s liberal arts curriculum as well as the experience and expertise of the team’s adviser and practicing attorney James McCune.
Watterson, who plans on attending law school following graduation, appreciates the importance of mock trial competitions and what they offer to pre-law students.
“There is no better way to prepare for law school,” he said. “How does one handle oneself in the courtroom? The intangible things you learn are invaluable.”
The top seven teams received a bid to an Opening Round Championship Series (ORCS) tournament in March: two teams from University of Michigan and a team each from Eastern Michigan University, The Ohio State University, Michigan State University, University of Cincinnati and Case Western Reserve University. After the ORCS round, the top six teams from each ORCS tournament will receive a bid to the National Championship Tournament in April.