KINGSTON – The Wyoming Seminary Mock Trial team concluded a successful mock-trial competition season last weekend at the 33rd Annual Pennsylvania Bar Association Statewide High School Mock Trial Competition, held on Friday and Saturday, April 1-2 in the Dauphin County Courthouse in Harrisburg.
The Sem team, representing Region 5 in state competition, finished in second place, falling only to Quigley Catholic High School, the defending champion. This is the fifth time in nine years that the Sem Blue Knights have advanced to the state level. The competition featured the top 14 Mock Trial teams in the Commonwealth.
Five members of the Sem team were honored with special awards. Senior Samarth Desai of Shavertown received three Best Advocate Awards, and junior Emily Laurore of Shavertown received one Best Advocate Award. Senior Lina Tori Jan of Kabul, Afghanistan received two Best Witness Awards, while juniors Avery Conyngham of Shavertown and Cobie Wise of Baldivis, Australia each received one Best Witness Award.
The Sem Blue Knights won the Statewide High School Mock Trial Competition in 2011 and went on to compete in Phoenix, Arizona, where they finished in sixth place, one of the highest finishes for the Commonwealth in the competition.
The competition, sponsored by the Young Lawyers Division of the Pennsylvania Bar Association, provides high school students with a firsthand experience of the American judicial system.
Mock trial teams argue a case before a judge and are evaluated based on their presentation, opening and closing arguments, direct and cross examination, poise and articulation, control of facts, and knowledge of Mock Trial rules of law and exceptions. Competitions involve two opposing high school teams who apply real-life statutes and case law to fictitious situations in a simulated trial setting.
Information provided by Wyoming Seminary.