The Wyoming Seminary Mock Trial team recently competed in the 2017 Region 5, District 2 High School Mock Trial Competition in the Luzerne County Courthouse in Wilkes-Barre, taking first place.
In addition to winning the district competition, which ran for three evenings, four team members received awards based on their outstanding individual performances in the courtroom. Recipients of the Best Witness Awards are senior Paige Allen and senior and team co-captain Avery Conyngham, while recipients of the Best Advocate (Attorney) Awards are Allen, senior and team co-captain Emily Laurore and junior Meghna Melkote. Allen and Conyngham each received two awards.
The team will now continue on to regional competition, to be held in March.
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 hypothetical 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.
Team members are coached by teacher-coaches Adam Carlisle and David Johnson, and are advised by area attorneys Paul Galante, Guerline L. Laurore, Joseph C. Ruby and Zach Watkins.
Members of the Sem Mock Trial team are seen after winning the 2017 District 2 High School Mock Trial Competition, standing from left: junior Samantha Immidisetti, junior Meghna Melkote, senior Avery Conyngham, senior Emily Laurore, senior Paige Allen, senior Imran Pakbaz and sophomore Philip Ouellette. The Hon. Tina Polachek Gartley, Luzerne County, was the presiding judge.