Advocacy and Skills Teams
“We have a combined total of more than 50 years of trial experience among our coaching staff—including extensive work in capital cases. Private law firms would pay top dollar for the kind of training we give our competition teams.” ~ Professor Victor M. Hansen
2015 Client Counseling Team: Front: Molly Case '16, Mona Zafar '16
Back: Ragie France '17, Professor Lisa Freudenheim, Erin Filban '17
New England Law | Boston sponsors several teams that compete in regional and national advocacy events. Team membership is generally open to upper-level students, and coaching sessions are conducted several times a week in the run up to a moot competition. Students spend countless hours presenting arguments, testing approaches, taking risks, and discovering what works for them in a mock trial.
This rigorous training pays off in moot court competitions. Competitors from other schools find New England Law’s advocacy and skills teams to be formidable opponents, and recent results show that students are acing their day in court.
Participation in these events provides an introduction to the legal community through contact with the practicing attorneys and jurists who adjudicate competitions, making it a great way for students to demonstrate their potential to future employers.
- Students put their advocacy skills to the test in an in-house Client Counseling Competition (CCC) open to all class years. In 2016, team members Amiee Parco '17 and Melissa O'Mara '17 took first place honors in the regional competition.
Coach: Academic Excellence Professor Lisa Freudenheim
- The Negotiation Team vaulted to the national level in only its second year of existence. (2011-2012 academic year) Coach: Academic Excellence Professor Robert Coulthard
Frederick Douglass Moot Court Competition
- Coach: Clinical Law Professor Caryn Mitchell-Munevar
Basic minimum requirements to apply for the team include that the applicant has at least a 3.2 GPA, has taken public international law, and is able to work the 10-25 hours per week from September through February necessary to prepare for the competition. Please note: availability may vary from year to year, as teams are formed only when a sufficient number of students qualify during the “try-out” period. Coaches: Associate Professor Lisa Laplante and Dina Francesca Haynes
- In 2014, a New England Law student received a Top Speaker Award in the competition, the nation's oldest with more than 70 teams annually. New England Law has fielded a team almost every year for the past two decades and a number of students have been recognized for their outstanding oral advocacy. Coach: Professor Peter Manus
- New England Law has been a perennial contender in the prestigious competition, having won eight brief awards since 1994. In 2015 the team of Ava Callender ’15 and Nina Hirsch ‘15 reached the competition’s fourth round before being eliminated by the eventual champion. It was the fifth year in a row that a New England Law squad has advanced to at least the quarterfinals. In 2012 the law school's team won the first runner-up Best Brief award and finished as a quarterfinalist overall, and in 2010 it won the national competition. The team took first place in the oral advocacy competition and a team member received the award for the best individual oralist. Coach: Professor Kent Schenkel
Quinnipiac University School of Law American Bar Association Criminal Justice Trial Advocacy Competition
- In 2015-2016, team members Daniel Finn, Kathryn Lavelle, Leslie Luna De Lara, and Natasia Partynski (Alternate, Bryan Colella) took second place. Coaches: Hon. Barbara Dortch-Okara and Tyler Ence (professor and lecturer on law, respectively)
- In 2011, Prateek Shukla ’12 received the top award for Best Oralist. Coaches: Associate Professor Peter Karol and Professor Russell VerSteeg