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Author Topic: Should I do Mock Trial?  (Read 3580 times)

greenie

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Should I do Mock Trial?
« on: January 12, 2009, 12:41:25 AM »
I don't see the point much... just a ton of extra work.

Is it worth the pain?  It seems "everyone is doing it".

Jets

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Re: Should I do Mock Trial?
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2009, 12:51:15 AM »
I don't see the point much... just a ton of extra work.

Is it worth the pain?  It seems "everyone is doing it".

Do it. It's fun, and believe me--it's hardly any work. I did barely anything, and made the board for it.

greenie

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Re: Should I do Mock Trial?
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2009, 12:58:47 AM »
I don't see the point much... just a ton of extra work.

Is it worth the pain?  It seems "everyone is doing it".

Do it. It's fun, and believe me--it's hardly any work. I did barely anything, and made the board for it.

Since you went to GW -- what about the ADR board?

Jets

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Re: Should I do Mock Trial?
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2009, 01:27:58 AM »
I don't see the point much... just a ton of extra work.

Is it worth the pain?  It seems "everyone is doing it".

Do it. It's fun, and believe me--it's hardly any work. I did barely anything, and made the board for it.

Since you went to GW -- what about the ADR board?

Naw, not that one. I competed, but was not a skillful negotiator. But I did make moot court, too--and that was a ton of fun.

JeNeSaisLaw

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Re: Should I do Mock Trial?
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2009, 01:45:32 AM »
I'm doing mock trial. It's fun so far. I don't think the winner gets anything, aside from a neat designation here.
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Vanderbilt Class of 2011

Matthies

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Re: Should I do Mock Trial?
« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2009, 05:48:39 AM »
Do you want to be a litigator? Personally I have no interest in being a litigator so I never did mock trial, but I was more interested in transactional work so I did a law review and a clinic in my area of interest. Personally I think its best to try and tailor your classes/clinics/extra circulars towards some area of interest to set you apart from the masses. If litigation is your thing then do MT. If not do things that will focus your resume on what you want to practice (assuming you have a rough idea of what that is by now). 

I have classmates who tried to do everything, and when I’ve looked at their resumes there is really no clear correlation between the types of jobs they are applying to and what they did in law school. They often get the “why us, why X law” question. They then spend a lot of time justifying why they want to work in the transactional corporate law department when they have nothing on their résumés showing any interest in that area up till the point of the interview, it can come across as saying “ I want to work in corporate law because that’s all you have open so I’ll take it even thought its clear I want to be a litigator from the classes/ECs I took.”

I’ve never had that problem because its pretty clear from my school activities what I want to do, and I only apply for jobs that do that. Again, this will only be beneficial if you have some idea what you want to practice now, and that won’t change, otherwise try different things to get an idea of what that is, but try to avoid being a jack of all trades and a specialist in nothing by the time you’re a 3L.
*In clinical studies, Matthies was well tolerated, but women who are pregnant, nursing or might become pregnant should not take or handle Matthies due to a rare, but serious side effect called him having to make child support payments.

loki13

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Re: Should I do Mock Trial?
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2009, 10:04:15 AM »
I disagree with Matthies 100%. To put on my *serious* hat for a while (take it while you can), allow me to relate the following pieces of advice:

1. The information you learn in law school has a low correlation, and sometimes no correlation, to what you actually practice. With the exception of a *very* few specialized classes, there are almost no subjects that you will not be able to pick up on the fly if you have a decent background.

2. Given 1, you should try and take classes with professors that are good and will engage you, not classes with a subject matter that you think some future employer might find relevant. As with all advice, there is some limit to this- if you want to do commercial litigation, it would help if you took something other than criminal law classes.

3. Given 1, it is also irrelevant what you 1L experience is so long as you gain something from it. I clerked for a state judge in family law division; I'm now doing BigLaw.

4. The relative focuses of the extracurriculars do not really matter for most jobs; they are signals. Law Review (or most prestigious journal) > Moot Court > Secondary Journals > Main Trial Team > Other Stuff Schools Make Up (other moot courts, intramural stuff, yada yada yada). Guess what? If you're applying to be a "litigator" at Skadden, they don't want need to see Trial Team- they want to see Law Review (although you can also be on trial team). There's many reasons for this, starting with the likelihood of seeing the inside of a courtroom your first year.

5. Look, many people's ideas of what they want to do changes during law school. The best advice is real simple- get the best grades you can. Take classes with the best professors your school has. Get on the most prestigious extra/co-curricular organization your school has. Do some interesting things so you don't seem like a dud during your callback interviews and have a few anecdotes to tell. Accumulate credentials (signals) for future employers. But most firms  realize that you have a general education, and that you first six months -  year will be ramping up on learning the difference between law school and law practice.

botbot

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Re: Should I do Mock Trial?
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2009, 11:10:24 AM »
Moot court / mock trial = contrived, unrealistic, and not very prestigious.

Fun though...

just Trev

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Re: Should I do Mock Trial?
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2009, 11:12:58 AM »
what about at a school where they are very good?  does it mean more there?

botbot

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Re: Should I do Mock Trial?
« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2009, 11:15:26 AM »
what about at a school where they are very good?  does it mean more there?

If you are on a team that will win a national award, more prestigious.