Advocacy Program sets record by reaching national finals in five categories during single academic year

While many students took time off during Spring Break, the St. Mary’s University’s National Dispute Resolution Team was hard at work, culminating in being crowned national champions in an American Bar Association competition and earning the chance to represent the United States internationally.

Delaney Montez, Max Massey and Jacklyn Dhaemers on campus
From left, Delaney Montez, Max Massey and Jacklyn Dhaemers.

“We continue to be impressed with the dedication, hard work and talent of our students and coaches,” said , Dean of the School of Law. “It is a tremendous honor that one of our teams will be representing the United States at the International Championship Rounds in Poland.”  

The national championship builds upon a record-breaking season for the , as the St. Mary’s School of Law is the first, and only, law school in the history of American Bar Association competitions to have teams advance to national finals in all five advocacy categories in the same academic year.  

 Those categories are appellate competition, arbitration, client counseling, mediation and negotiations. 

Advocacy programs give law students real-world experience by allowing them to practice in a courtroom setting before mock judges, juries and other aspects, such as negotiations. The Advocacy Program includes the Dispute Resolution Team, the Moot Court Team, the Trial Team and the International Jessup Moot Court Team. 

The National Dispute Resolution Team won the American Bar Association Client Counseling Competition, held March 15 and 16, and will represent the U.S. in Poland in April.  

The team consisted of third-year J.D. students Max Massey and Jacklyn Dhaemers and second-year J.D. student Delaney Montez.   

History-making team effort 

In addition to the Client Counseling competition, the National Dispute Resolution Team sent two more teams to national finals throughout the year, helping the St. Mary’s Advocacy Program reach finals in the five different categories.  

One of the Dispute Resolution teams went to national finals in negotiations in February, earning their spot after being crowned winners of the ABA Regional Negotiation Competition in November 2023 91ߣƵ.  

The second Dispute Resolution team was crowned regional champions in mediation at the ABA Representation in Mediation Competition in February and will compete in the national finals in April in Chicago.  

The Trial Team sent two teams to the national finals after placing in the ABA Regional Arbitration Competition at Creighton University School of Law in Omaha, Nebraska, in November, and the Moot Court Team will compete at the ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition finals in April. 

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