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The Trial Team Intramural Competition takes place each year at the beginning of the Fall semester, and is open to second-year students and transfer students with four semesters of law school remaining. The Intramural Competition begins with an Information Session, and culminates in the Final Four competition, a showcase event in which a prominent judge will preside over a trial put on by the top four competitors from the Intramural Competition.
Students are encouraged to register for the Competition’s TWEN page, titled Trial Team Fall 2011 Intramural Competition (Tryouts) for important information and dates about the upcoming Competition. Students are also encouraged to visit the Intramural Competition Dates.
At the Information Session, competitors will learn important information about the Competition process, as well as receive an Honor Code that all students must sign in order to participate in the Intramural Competition. Students are not expected to be trial experts before competing, and having knowledge of the Federal and Florida Rules of Evidence prior to the Competition is also not necessary. These are skills that members of Trial Team will later learn from classes, assisting Trial Team members, and especially in preparing and participating in their own competitions. In order to assist competitors in the tryout process, at Education Session #1, for Rounds 1 and 2, students will be instructed by current Trial Team members on how to give a closing argument.
Trial Team tryouts are unique in that the Competition requires that the talent of competitors be seen in person. Because of that, the Competition does not begin until students arrive back to campus for the Fall semester. Round 1 will require competitors to give a closing argument in representation of the defense. Competitors will have a limited amount of time to give a closing argument in front of a panel of judges, including current Trial Team members, former Trial Team members, attorneys from across the state of Florida, and even practicing judges. Competitors who advance to Round 2 will then have the opportunity to give a closing argument in representation of the State.
Before Round 3, competitors who advance to the Round will have the opportunity to attend the Education Session #2, where current Trial Team members will instruct competitors on how to deliver an opening statement and how to give direct and cross examinations. Round 3 will then consist of pairs of competitors, assigned randomly, giving an opening statement, direct examination of a witness, and cross examination of a witness in an adversarial format. Although the format is adversarial (State opening statement followed by the defense opening statement, direct examination of the State’s witness, cross examination of the State’s witness, direct examination of the defense’s witness, cross examination of the defense’s witness), the pair of competitors are not in direct competition for a spot on the team against each other. This means that both, one, or neither of the competitors can make the team. Once the competition ends and the new team members are selected, the top four cumulative scores from competitors who have made the team will make up the Final Four. These four competitors will then try a full case in front of a prominent judge, law school students, faculty and administration, and lawyers from the community.
If you have any additional questions regarding the Intramural Competition, please email the Executive Vice President of Intramural Competition at firstname.lastname@example.org. All emails will remain anonymous, so please feel free to ask any questions you have!