Last weekend, February 17 – 19, Saint Anselm College hosted more than 185 students as part of the American Mock Trial Association’s (AMTA) Qualifying Tournament. Twenty-three teams from colleges and universities all over New England competed in four rounds. Saint Anselm mock trial captain and club co-founder, Alyssa Hatem ’12, received the All Region Attorney award. There were also awards given for All Region Witness and 2012 Spirit of AMTA.
Eight teams moved on to the next round in White Plains, N.Y.: Wellesley College, Colby College, Tufts University, University of New Hampshire, Harvard, University of Vermont, University of Massachusetts Amherst, and Yale.
Saint Anselm’s team, founded only three years ago, competed against Amherst College, University of Vermont, University of New Hampshire, and Colby College.
Hatem, a politics major, was very pleased with her team’s performance, saying, “My teammates far exceeded anything I could have expected from such a young team and I am very proud of them. I cannot wait to see what they accomplish next year.”
The tournament opened with a ceremony on Friday evening where keynote speaker, Supreme Court Associate Justice Robert Lynn, spoke to students. Classrooms in Gadbois and Goulet were turned into courtrooms where two judges scored students on their performances. The tournament featured a criminal case with teams acting as either the defense or prosecution for the murder trial.
In addition, 35 alumni volunteered to be judges for the competition. The alumni are law students, lawyers, judges, or had past experience in mock trial. Some scored multiple rounds and came from as far as Bangor, Maine.