Moot Court Competitions
At Saint Louis University School of Law, we provide our students with on-going opportunities to hone the skills necessary for success beyond the classroom. For this reason, activities like competitions are essential in preparing students for experiences found in the real-world setting. Moot Court competitions are a regular opportunity for SLU LAW students in a variety of legal areas.
Appellate Advocacy Moot Court Competition
Under the direction of Professor Paige Canfield, the Appellate Advocacy program seeks to sharpen a student's skills in research, analysis, writing and oral argument. Appellate Advocacy at SLU LAW begins with Moot Court I and II courses.
In Moot Court I, students are assigned a team, and with the assistance of Moot Court student judges, must research and prepare an appellate brief as well as present oral arguments. The student judges, a group of third-year students previously a part of the program, work in tandem with the Director of Legal Research and Writing Chris Rollins, to review the student teams as they engage in competition.
The top 20 students from Moot Court I are invited to participate in Moot Court II. Participants in Moot Court II engage in quarter-final, semi-final and final rounds of arguments. The final arguments are held before a large audience at the School of Law and are judged by visiting justices and judges from the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals, the Missouri Supreme Court, the Missouri Court of Appeals and other federal and state courts. Finalists in Moot Court II are eligible to compete in the National Moot Court competition.
Jessup Moot Court Competition
In this competition, students are required to write a brief and argue a hypothetical case pertaining to international law as if arguing in front of the International Court of Justice in the Hague, Netherlands. Selected through an internal competition, the School's team consists of second and third year students. The winning team from the Midwest Regional Competition then proceeds to the international round, pitting them against the winners from the other eleven U.S. regional competitions and national competitions in over 50 different countries.
Intellectual Property Moot Court Competition
Law students participate in two intellectual property moot court competitions: The Giles Sutherland Rich Moot Court Competition, sponsored by the American Intellectual Property Law Association, and the Saul Lefkowitz Moot Court Competition, sponsored by the Brand Names Education Foundation. In both competitions, students are required to write a brief and argue a hypothetical case pertaining to patent or trademark law, as if they were arguing in front of a federal appeallate court. The School's teams consist of second and third year students who are selected, through an internal competition, to represent the School of Law at the regional level of each competition. The winning teams from those competitions may then proceed to a national competition.
National Health Law Moot Court Competiton
The competition allows students to write an appellate brief on a developing area of health law and policy, then argue both sides of the appeal before faculty and law trained administrators, distinguished alumni and, eventually, at the national competition. In 2006, one of the two SLU teams won the national competition. In addition, the two SLU teams won first and second place in the best brief category. In 2008 and 2009, the SLU LAW teams have placed in the top eight teams in the competition. The health law moot court team is coached by Amy Sanders, JD, Assistant Director of the Center for Health Law Studies.
Frederick Douglass Moot Court Competition
One of the cornerstones of the National Black Law Student Association's programming is the FDMCC. Since its inception in 1975, the FDMCC has consistently provided NBLSA members with excellent training in appellate advocacy through oral argument and brief writing. Each year, between 100 and 125 teams compete across the nation within the six Regional Competitions, culminating in the top three teams from each region competing at the national level during NBLSA's Annual Convention. FDMCC provides competitors with the opportunity to argue issues that are at the forefront of debate in the legal profession.
In 2011 the SLU team won the National Championship, and Kirsten Staples ('11) won the national best oralist honor. The SLU BLSA team is coached by Adjunct Professor Sheena R. Hamilton, J.D. ('10), an employment and labor attorney at Armstrong Teasdale, LLP.