Four head to national moot court tourney

(Jan. 11, 2012) LOUISVILLE, Ky. - After a strong performance in regional competition, four McConnell Scholars head to nationals this weekend.

Four McConnell Scholars at the University of Louisville are headed to Orange County, Calif., this week for the American Collegiate Moot Court National Tournament. The two-day competition will be held at Chapman University Law School.

The teams of two finished second and third overall in regional competition last fall and will compete at the national level Jan. 13-14.

"It's been a lot of work preparing for the competitions but the end results show how much time and energy we've put into it," said Arsh Haque, a freshman McConnell Scholar who finished 18th overall in regional competition.

Haque is paired with senior Ben Shepard, a McConnell Scholar from Oldham County, who placed eighth overall in the 2011 Southeast Regional Competition at the University of Central Florida.

Junior Ben Weyman (Campbell County) and sophomore Melissa Moore (Jefferson County), whose pairing resulted in third place overall in regionals, will also compete in Friday's national tournament.

Under the direction of McConnell Scholar alumnus Neil Salyer (Class of 2001, Magoffin County), students engage theoretical and legal constructs in simulated appellate court cases. Students typically spend a semester researching, writing and practicing their oral arguments.

The McConnell Scholars Program moot court team is the only undergraduate team of its kind at the University of Louisville.