Scholars Academy students got the opportunity to prospect future careers at Mock Trial as lawyers, witnesses, timekeepers, and court artists on Saturday, January 28 at the Lowndes County Courthouse where they won third place overall.
Junior John West won outstanding attorney. Sophomore Claudia White and junior Matthew Cline won outstanding witness awards.
Each student has a different role in the event such as Jacob Cone, Alexa Hernandez, and John West as Defense Attorneys. They each give different statements throughout the event in order to show their abilities as lawyers.
“I am the lead Defense Attorney for Mock Trial, which means that I will give the closing statement for my side and also lead the other two witnesses,” said Cone.
Students began practicing for the event back in December. Students prepare by having multiple practice sessions on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays where they all gather together to read the case, make notes, and ask questions that they believe are relevant to their roles. It takes different people different amounts of time to become fully prepared for the event. Each person has a different process that they go through in order to become prepared for the competition
“I do my part in preparing for Mock Trial by reviewing the case we were given and practicing the questions I have for the Plaintiff,” said Hernandez.
Cone said, “It takes me around three weeks to prepare. I first began reading the case, then going over the witness statements, then examining the evidence. I then repeat the process and write down questions for my side, so that I am fully prepared to present the case for my side.”
All of the participating students seem to have had a wonderful experience learning about the law process and putting their knowledge to the test during the competition. The students use the event to demonstrate and practice their public speaking as well as people skills.
“So far my teammates have all worked together to understand the case and make points for one another so I’ve really enjoyed the level of teamwork we participate in. It’s a really great experience,” said West.
For some students, this is their first year participating in the event but other members of the Mock Trial team are veterans to the event, such as senior, Cone, who has taken part in the event since 9th grade.
“This is my first year of Mock Trial, but so far my experience has been great. I hope to one day use the experience and apply it because I want to study to become a lawyer someday,” said West.
Participating in Mock Trial has shown many students, such as Cone and West, that they belong inside the courtroom and that studying law is in their future.