Concord’s Pre-Law Team Finishes 6th in the Nation

For Immediate Release: 
Aug 04 2003

Concord’s Pre-Law Team Finishes 6th in the Nation

Athens, W. Va. – Concord College’s “Moot Court” team surprised many by finishing sixth in the Phi Alpha Delta, National Moot Court competition held in Chicago, Illinois. Teams from major colleges and universities across the United States displayed their skills in legal research, debate, evidence, and courtroom strategy.

Moot court is a hypothetical case argued as an exercise by law students.

“We were going head-to-head with some of the finest universities in the world,” said team sponsor, Dr. John David Smith. “I knew we could compete well and the kids really rose to the occasion.”

“To say that Concord did well is a colossal understatement,” said Michael Curry, vice president for admissions and financial aid. “Our program is brand new and it is run on a shoestring budget. Yet, our pre-law students defeated many of the top universities in the entire country.”

“The amazing fact was that we only had a few weeks to prepare,” said Smith, who teaches for Concord. “Other teams had been preparing for months in advance. Next year, we too will take time. Heck, if we could finish this high on scant preparation; I get really excited by the prospect of taking a fully prepared group!”

Competitors argued their cases before judges selected from district courts. Simulating actual courtroom procedures, students presented cases, cross examined witnesses, presented evidence and made summation statements all according to the standard rules of courtroom procedure.

“When we started, I was really nervous,” said Steven Kade, a Concord freshman from PikeView High School who is on the team. “As each case proceeded, we began to gain confidence and we knew we could hang with the bigger universities. Then, we began to win cases and we really got on a roll. It was great!”

“This is a wonderful experience for our students in our pre-law mentoring program,” said Smith. “Not only does it provide practical experience in courtroom procedures, but it also gives the nation a glimpse at how strong Concord College’s pre-law students actually are. Each participant will have a big leg up when they apply to law schools.”

“Concord has proven again,” said Curry, “that our placement rates at places like Harvard Law, Washington and Lee, UVA Law, UC Berkley and Stanford are not flukes. The fact is that a student participating in our pre-law mentoring program will receive a stellar education, empowering them to succeed both academically and professionally.”

“This was my first year in the competition,” said Kade. “I’ll be back again and Concord College will well-represent the state of West Virginia and the Appalachian region. Who knows, by the time I’m a senior, I believe we just may win the whole thing. That’s what I’m working toward.”

“They surprised the nation but not me,” said Robert Michael of the University of Virginia Law School and former Concord student from Princeton High School. “When I graduated from Concord, I knew I could compete with the best. My experience at UVA has only reinforced that fact. The team is to be congratulated and Concord should win the praise of every West Virginian today.”

For more information about Concord’s pre-law mentoring program and the moot court competition, call toll free 1-888-384-5249 or e-mail