Scholars to compete in regional moot court

(Nov. 12, 2015) TAMPA, Fla. – Two teams of McConnell Scholars head to moot court regional competition this weekend.
Scholars to compete in regional moot court

Robert Gassman, center, practices with the McConnell Center's undergraduate moot court team.

Two teams of McConnell Scholars will travel and compete in Tampa, Fla., Nov. 13 and 14 for the South Atlantic Regional moot court tournament.

Veteran competitors Jacob Abrahamson (’17) and Macey Mayes (’18) are paired as one team, having competed together in the 2014 tournament. Newcomers Alicia Humphrey (’17) and Robert Gassman (’18) comprise the second team.

“I am immensely grateful for the opportunity to represent both the University of Louisville and the McConnell Center at such a prestigious competition,” Gassman said. “Moot court has afforded me the opportunity to enrich my critical thinking and public speaking skills, and I am excited to take those skills and represent the state of Kentucky in Florida this weekend.”

The tournament is sponsored by the American Collegiate Moot Court Association and is one of ten tournaments to qualify for the national tournament at California State University at Long Beach. Thirty-two teams compete in the qualifying tournament, and eight will advance to the national level.

Competitors will offer arguments related to the free exercise of religion and the equal protection clause in a hypothetical case about immigration and higher education.

“This case is both an interesting legal question and addresses very important political issues,” said Abrahamson. “I’m looking forward to hearing what other competitors have done with the case.”

These four scholars are the only undergraduate competitors in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Coached by McConnell Scholar alumnus Neil Salyer ('01), students typically spend a semester researching, writing and practicing oral arguments.