January 18, 2011
Moot Court is not just for law school anymore. Over the past decade, a number of undergraduate moot court activities have been developed in American colleges and universities. To improve and expand on the latest moot court development, the American Collegiate Moot Court Association (ACMA) was established in 2000.
This past weekend, Tulane Law School hosted the ACMA National Tournament in New Orleans. A total of 64 undergraduate teams from around the country came to Tulane to compete after qualifying through one of eight regional tournaments held in the fall 2010.
Over the tournament’s two days, participating teams engaged in oral argument before three-judge panels composed of more than 100 local judges and lawyers, many of them Tulane law graduates who volunteered to arbitrate the rounds. The fictional tournament case addressed mandatory health care and same-sex marriage.
After seven rounds of hearings, the final championship round took place before the Honorable Fredericka Wicker (L ’77) who presided as Chief Justice of the Tulane Supreme Court, along with Tulane law Professor Onnig Dombalagian and prominent New Orleans attorney Tony DiLeo (L ’70), both of whom served as associate justices.
“This was the first time Tulane hosted the ACMA championships,” said Dean Susan Krinsky, associate dean at Tulane Law School. “This was a wonderful opportunity for us to showcase Tulane Law School and New Orleans to prospective law students from across the country. In addition, we were able to take advantage of the extraordinary talent pool of our local alumni. I think all of the volunteer judges were impressed by the exceptional quality evidenced by the competitors.”
Alex Harris and Brett Harris from Patrick Henry College, a 357-student liberal-arts college in Purcellville, Va., won the national tournament.