The Catholic University of America

From left to right: Kelly Van Buskirk (2D), Helene Gogadze (3D), Adam Malizio (2D), Leah Walker (3E), and team coach Amanda Grier (3D).

CUA Law Shines at the 2009 Jessup International
Law Moot Court Competition

After two days of grueling preliminary rounds, the four-member international law moot court team representing the Columbus School of Law placed fourth in a field of 24 schools at the 2009 Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, U.S. Mid-Atlantic Super Regional held in Washington, DC from Feb. 20 to 22.

After winning each of the four preliminary rounds, the team performed flawlessly in the quarterfinals, impressing the panel of judges with their advocacy skills and creative legal analysis. However, they were not among the four teams to advance to the semi-finals. Kelly Van Buskirk won an individual award for Top 20 Best Oralists, placing 16th out of approximately 100 competitors.

The team huddles to strategize for the quarterfinals.

In the practices prior to the competition, the team benefited greatly from the expertise and encouragement of Professors Karla Simon and Leon Irish, who served as faculty advisors. Professor Antonio Perez also lent support to the team. Many others generously devoted their time and energy to the cause, including Amanda Grier, who served as this year's coach, Jeremy Prose, moot court chancellor, Maria D'Aoust, the 2008 Jessup team coach, Niki Kennedy, Andrew Lopez and Andrew McCallister, all competitors from the 2008 team, and Todd Piantidosi.

Now in its 50th year, the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition is the world's largest moot court competition, with participants from over 500 law schools in more than 80 countries. The competition is a simulation of a fictional dispute between countries before the International Court of Justice, the judicial organ of the United Nations. A team from each participating school is required to prepare oral and written pleadings arguing both the applicant and respondent positions of the case.