The College of Law’s Bruce Spaulding Trial Competition held its final round of contests September 14, with third-year law students Lauren Barnes and Stacey Gibbons selected as winners. The team argued their case against second-year law students Sarah Lowe and James Sullivan, in what was their first real moot court competition (first-years can’t participate).
The Spaulding Competition mimics a real trial, and teams are given the civil trial problem beforehand in order to prepare, said Cindy Davis, president of the Moot Court Board. Each side has two witnesses, and competitors must conduct opening statements and closing arguments.
Teams are judged on their opening statements, direct examination, cross examination, motions, objections, and closing arguments. Davis said judging is done by local attorneys and judges who volunteer their time to help the students be successful.
This year’s civil trial problem was the fictional case of a doctor, the plaintiff, suing a department store, the defendant, for defamation, false arrest, and malicious prosecution. Gibbons and Barnes argued as the plaintiff.
The next competition for Moot Court Board is the National Appellate Competition, which is only open to members of the student organization. The top team(s) may represent Willamette at the National Appellate Competition in April of 2017 in Chicago.
About the Bruce Spaulding Trial Competition
An opportunity for students to practice trial advocacy, the Spaulding Competition is the first Moot Court Board sponsored competition of the year at Willamette University College of Law. The civil trial exercise is open to all members of the Moot Court Board.
About Moot Court Board
Willamette University College of Law Moot Court Board promotes the art of appellate and trial advocacy by sponsoring various competitions and providing educational seminars. Moot Court Board is committed to helping Willamette Law students improve their skills as advocates in a competitive environment.
About Willamette University College of Law
Opened in 1883, Willamette University College of Law is the first law school in the Pacific Northwest. The college has a long tradition at the forefront of legal education and is committed to the advancement of knowledge through excellent teaching, scholarship, mentoring and experience. Leading faculty, thriving externship and clinical law programs, ample practical skills courses, and a proactive career placement office prepare Willamette law students for today's legal job market. According to statistics compiled by the American Bar Association, Willamette ranks first in the Pacific Northwest for job placement for full-time, long-term, JD-preferred/JD-required jobs for the class of 2014 and first in Oregon for the classes of 2012, 2013 and 2014. Located across the street from the state capitol complex and the Oregon Supreme Court in downtown Salem, the college specializes in law and government, law and business, and dispute resolution.