STU Moot Court Hosts Virtual Tommies’ Tournament

St. Thomas University Moot Court began its season of regional competition last weekend, hosting 26 teams from 13 universities for the second annual Tommies’ Tournament.


All American Moot Court Association events, including the National Tournament, are being hosted virtually this year, and preparing to compete in an online setting provided new challenges for students.


“Virtual competition created extra considerations in our preparation,” said third-year STUdent Ashley Thornton. “Though some of the changes may seem frivolous, like ensuring your computer is propped at an appropriate angle, that you have good lighting, and you maintain eye contact with the camera, they are actually quite important.”


STU Moot Court practices have also been held virtually this year, but the teams participating in the Tommies’ Tournament were able to compete on campus while following safety guidelines.


STU Mooters Earns One Bid to Nationals and Top Speaker Award

STU Moot Court had five teams competing in the tournament—Thornton and Emily Green, Julia Evans and Ethan Nylen, Kassie Trainor and Victoria Fejes, Madeline Taylor and Brianna Hill, and Alex Nguyen and Kurvin Silvio.


Thornton and Green placed highest at the event, finishing in fifth place after narrowly edging out Nylen and Evans with one extra ballot.  Their top five finish qualifies them for the American Moot Court National Tournament that will be held January 22-23, 2021.


“This was my first moot competition and there were several highly ranked teams—including our STU teams—so my co-counsel and I are very proud to have secured a bid to nationals,” Thornton said. “I’m excited to have the opportunity to compete again, to continue improving my public speaking skills, and to work with Emily to improve our performance for nationals.”


Evans, who is in her first year with Moot Court, was named the Top Speaker of the tournament.


“It felt great to be recognized, especially amongst so many talented students and universities,” Evans said. “Moot Court is such a rewarding program and an amazing atmosphere. It’s truly wonderful to be part of such a hardworking and supportive team.”