On February 11 and 12, Buffalo State will host the American Mock Trial Association’s 2017 Great Lakes Regional Tournament. Buffalo State and teams from 13 other universities will participate in the two-day event, which the college has been hosting since 2011. A total of 24 teams will participate. More than 200 students, coaches, and parents are expected to attend.
The competition consists of four rounds: two Saturday and two Sunday. Each trial requires two to three judges. The presiding judge will rule on objections and evidentiary procedure, and the scoring judges will rate the performance of the student attorneys and witnesses.
“We’d be happy to have more volunteers to serve as scoring judges,” said Jon Lines, lecturer of political science and regional tournament director. “We’re looking for people who can evaluate oral presentations. Volunteers to assist with logistics would be very helpful, too.”
This year’s case is a civil case in which a plaintiff, age 50, alleges age discrimination after being fired.
Teams from other SUNY schools, including the University at Buffalo, SUNY Geneseo, and SUNY Binghamton, will participate. Syracuse, Penn State, and St. Bonaventure are among the other universities who will be represented. All activities will be held in the Science and Mathematics Complex.
Mock trial is a USG-recognized organization that fields a team of students who take part in legal competitions. It’s open to students from any major.
“Even if students aren’t interested in going on to law school,” said Lines, “the skills they learn, such as oral communication, critical thinking, teamwork, and public speaking will serve them well in any career they pursue.”
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