Moot Court research and argument allows students to develop skills in courtroom advocacy. For students aiming to become litigators, prosecutors, or defense attorneys, this provides great practice. Many law schools (for example Texas Tech School of Law) place special emphasis on Moot Court.
For decades, the UT Arlington Moot Court team has participated successfully in regional, national, and international contests — often besting law school teams. Our legendary Moot Court Director, Dr. Charles Knerr, passed away in 2011.
The team's current advisor is Dr. Oliver Bateman. Dr. Bateman joined the UT-Arlington faculty after completing his Ph.D. in legal history at the University of Pittsburgh. He also holds a JD from Valparaiso University School of Law, and is a specialist in law and education, transatlantic history, and sports law. Along with local attorneys, Dr. Bateman assists Moot Court team members as they research cases, write briefs, and practice oral arguments for Moot Court contests.
2014-2015 SEASON IN REVIEW
The 2014-2015 season looks to be the most successful yet for UTA's revamped and expanded Moot Court program. With local attorneys directing the fifteen enrolled students during their biweekly practices, UTA's upcoming competitions at Texas Tech (November 7-8), Texas A&M (November 14-15), and Long Beach State (November 21-22) promise to be effective showcases of the team's forensic ability. Bhavik Patel and Davinder Jassal, who helped relaunch the team in 2012-2013, are returning as team president and vice president, respectively.
2013-2014 SEASON IN REVIEW
In Fall 2013, the Pre-Law Center sent 9 students to Long Beach State University to compete in a national qualifying meet. The cost of the trip for the students was underwritten by a generous donation from alumnus Andrew Sommerman, whose support and guidance has been instrumental in relaunching Texas-Arlington's Moot Court program. Although no students advanced to the nationals in this extremely rigorous event--considered by many to be the most difficult regional in the nation--nearly all of the students saw their scores improve from round to round. Davinder Jassal, a returning student from the 2012-2013 Moot Court team, posted a record of 6-1-2 in head-to-head competition against experienced competition. While in the Los Angeles area, the students toured Venice (Muscle) Beach, Rodeo Drive, Mulholland Drive, and Hollywood. Read more about the 2013 Long Beach State Invitational by clicking here. In spring 2014, Jassal and Angela Coward competed in a scrimmage at SMU Dedman School of Law in which neither student relied on written notes when arguing.
Bhavik Patel (left) and Davinder Jassal (right) discuss the 2013-2014 American Collegiate Moot Court case problem.
Moot Court team members Gabriel Alonso (left), Jacob Surratt (center), and 2013-2015 Goolsby Scholar Mark Cantrell (right) enjoy a relaxing breakfast before the Long Beach State Invitational Tournament later that afternoon.
The Moot Court team also toured various Los Angeles sites, including Venice Beach. Left to right: Andre Raymond, Mark Cantrell, Davinder Jassal, Angela Coward, Miriam Garza, Bhavik Patel, Jacob Surratt, Christian Nisttahuz, and Gabriel Alonso.
Jacob Surratt, Mark Cantrell, and Angela Coward wanted to express their thanks to alumnus Andrew Sommerman for subsidizing the cost of their trip to Los Angeles.
2012-2013 SEASON IN REVIEW
In October 2012, two teams from UTA (consisting entirely of first-time Moot Court participants) competed in a standalone event at the South Texas College of Law. Jaclyn Sugg and Bhavik Patel advanced to the Round of 16, where they lost by a narrow margin to a team from Texas Christian University. Sugg was named one of the "top orators" at the event, with Patel, Danielle Garcia, and David Marrufo also turning in strong performances. Along with new members Carolyn Ruiz (currently attending Harvard Law School) and Davinder Jassal, Marrufo and Patel thereafter participated in a nationals qualifying meet at Texas Tech School of Law that took place in mid-November 2012. Marrufo and Patel bettered their individual scores from the South Texas meet, and Ruiz and Jassal advanced to the Round of 16. Jassal, Patel, and first-time participants Mark Cantrell, Andre Raymond, Trae'Vorris Canady and Jacob Surratt completed the Moot Court season with a Spring 2013 scrimmage at Texas Wesleyan University.
Prior to 2012, Moot Court was a student club. The 2011-2012 team raised funds from outside donors and competed in an international event in Vienna, Austria. Read about the 2012 UT Arlington team's experience in Austria.
The spring 2013 UTA Moot Court team (left to right): Jacob Surratt, Trae'Vorris Canady, Mark Cantrell, Andre Raymond, and faculty advisor Dr. Oliver Lee Bateman.
Davinder Jassal (left) and Andre Raymond competed together at the Texas Wesleyan School of Law's spring 2013 scrimmage.
Trae'Vorris Canady (left) and Mark Cantrell joined the Moot Court team in spring 2013.
Jaclyn Sugg (left) was named one of the "top orators" at the South Texas College of Law's Fall 2012 Undergraduate Moot Court competition. Noted Texas trial attorney, UTA alumnus, and American Collegiate Moot Court Association co-founder Andrew Sommerman is on the far right.
Davinder Jassal, Carolyn Ruiz, Bhavik Patel, and David Marrufo represented UTA at the Texas Tech School of Law's Fall 2012 undergraduate moot court competition. Ruiz (now a 1L at Harvard Law School) and Jassal advanced to the Round of 16, and Patel and Marrufo bettered their individual scores from the earlier South Texas meet.
The Pre-Law Center at UT Arlington
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