Mock trial tam competes under unique circumstances

Last+year%27s+mock+trial+pictured+here+competed+in+person.+Amid+the+pandemic%2C+the+mock+trial+team+of+this+year+had+to+compete+via+Zoom.+

Last year’s mock trial pictured here competed in person. Amid the pandemic, the mock trial team of this year had to compete via Zoom.

Tara Cole '21, Social Media Manager

Along with many other school clubs, the mock trial team has made multiple adjustments during the past year due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

On Saturday, March 13, the club attended their regional competition, however this year was the first to be held via ZOOM.

According to Christina Thomas ‘21, the competition taking place online had no effect on her performance.

“Half of law is just being able to speak well, and since we had a fair amount of time to practice beforehand, I think we did really well,” Thomas said. “I believe the issues we had would have existed if we were in person as well.”

Audrey Becker ‘21 agrees that the team had a strong performance, despite the new online format.

“The competition was very successful for our team, we had a lot of powerful moments that really made me feel like it was a real trial,” Becker said. “I know I made some mistakes, but I always learn a lot from those moments because the judges give great insight.”

Although the new format didn’t personally affect their performances, Becker said that there were some minor difficulties the competition as a whole experienced.

“At times there were poor connections and lagging which would throw off the sequence of questioning,” Becker said. “However I believe we did a great job of not letting that bother us.”

According to mock trial adviser Peter Palen, the preparation remained very similar to what they would be doing if in-person.

“We were still able to work together and discuss the problem,” Palen said. “The only difference this year is that we worked over a zoom call instead.”

Becker said that although she is happy with how the performance went, she does prefer the competition to be held in-person.

“It’s really cool when we are able to stroll around the courtroom and play out the roles even further like we’ve done in-person before,” Becker said. “I also missed the team bonding we would get to do in person, but we did the best with what we had.”

According to Thomas, the team ended up receiving two honorable mentions.

“Both of our teams received honorable mentions, which means we were right on the edge of qualifying for the statewide competition,” Thomas said.

Both Becker and Thomas agree that being a part of the team and participating in the competition will help them in their future endeavors.

“As an aspiring future lawyer, my three years on mock trial have been super beneficial to get a head start on learning the nuances of law and court proceedings which is super exciting,” Becker said.