I’m pleased to host a guest blog from 3L Jenny Moore, one of the winners of last year’s Grimes Moot Court Competition, describing her experience in the competition and on a moot court team.
Around BC Law, the dawn of Spring means the annual Grimes Moot Court Competition is reaching its conclusion: two teams vying to be champion in front of three distinguished judges. Grimes is BC Law’s internal moot court competition. Pairs of 2Ls spend a month writing a brief on a hypothetical appellate dispute, and over a month facing off once a week at oral arguments. Last year, my partner, Brooke Hartley, and I took it all home.
Participating in Grimes was one of my favorite parts of law school. Preparing for argument and arguing in front of the judges was unlike anything I had ever done before. I had always enjoyed public speaking but never felt the nerves beforehand until Grimes. Each week I was incredibly nervous right before my argument, but as soon as I got going and received questions from the judges, my nerves would turn into straight adrenaline. I enjoyed the challenge of being on my toes and trying to answer difficult questions in the most effective way possible to win the argument.
Brooke and I were pretty surprised each week when we would advance, and it was always exciting to see how the next round of judges would put us to the test. The day of the finals was one of the most nerve-wracking days of my life, but it will always be a special memory that we got to argue in front of such a distinguished panel, especially Merrick Garland.
Winning moot court was a great achievement and a nice pay-off for all the work that we had done throughout the semester. It also allowed us the opportunity to be on the National Moot Court Team this year. Being able to represent BC in the national competition was such an honor and we really enjoyed mooting with our coach and professors throughout the fall semester.
Each week we were able to hone our oral advocacy skills further while gaining more confidence responding to judges’ questions. During the actual competition, it was fun to go against other schools in the area and see how their arguing styles differed from ours. Observing others’ arguments and participating myself, I learned what made my style effective but also what I could improve.
The entire experience of Grimes and competing on a national team this year taught me a lot about oral advocacy and I will employ these skills throughout my career. I truly think it is one of the most effective ways to learn oral advocacy and would recommend it to any student in law school, especially the students going into litigation.
The Finals of the Grimes Moot Court Competition will take place on Wednesday, April 18 at 4 pm in the East Wing building, room 120. Presiding Judges include Hon. Jennifer Walker Elrod (United States Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit); Hon. Robert N. Scola ‘80 (United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida); and Hon. Geraldine S. Hines (Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts (ret.). Teams: John Gavin and Timothy Andrea; Mitchell Clough and Daniel Johnson. All are welcome.