Luther College Chips

Mock trial travels to Hamline, competes in regional tournament

Front+from+left%3A+Cydney+Rose+%28%E2%80%9819%29%2C+Karl+Badger+%28%E2%80%9819%29%2C+Ishmail+Hammid+%28%E2%80%9819%29%2C+Yancy+Castro+%28%E2%80%9818%29%2C+and+Libby+Morton+%28%E2%80%9819%29.+%0ABack+from+left%3A+Katrina+Meyer+%28%E2%80%9819%29%2C+Claire+Eichorn+%28%E2%80%9819%29%2C+Becca+Buse+%28%E2%80%9819%29%2C+Anna+Luber+%28%E2%80%9820%29%2C++and+Anika+Nelson+%28%E2%80%9819%29++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Front from left: Cydney Rose (‘19), Karl Badger (‘19), Ishmail Hammid (‘19), Yancy Castro (‘18), and Libby Morton (‘19). 
Back from left: Katrina Meyer (‘19), Claire Eichorn (‘19), Becca Buse (‘19), Anna Luber (‘20),  and Anika Nelson (‘19)

Front from left: Cydney Rose (‘19), Karl Badger (‘19), Ishmail Hammid (‘19), Yancy Castro (‘18), and Libby Morton (‘19). Back from left: Katrina Meyer (‘19), Claire Eichorn (‘19), Becca Buse (‘19), Anna Luber (‘20), and Anika Nelson (‘19)

Photo courtesy of Libby Morton (‘19)

Photo courtesy of Libby Morton (‘19)

Front from left: Cydney Rose (‘19), Karl Badger (‘19), Ishmail Hammid (‘19), Yancy Castro (‘18), and Libby Morton (‘19). Back from left: Katrina Meyer (‘19), Claire Eichorn (‘19), Becca Buse (‘19), Anna Luber (‘20), and Anika Nelson (‘19)

Biz Wagenson, Staff Writer

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Luther’s Mock Trial team traveled to Hamline University  in St. Paul, MN, to compete in the 2017 regionals competition over the weekend of Feb. 24.

The team went head-to-head with eight different schools, finishing 3-5, meaning they will not be moving past this stage. If they had moved on, they would have gone on to the Opening Round Championships (ORCs) held in Geneva, IL with hopes of pursuing Nationals held in Los Angeles, CA. The team — which is led by Professor of Political Science Michael Engelhardt and consists of eight Luther students, including co-captains Libby Morton (‘19) and Anika Nelson (‘19) — competed against 23 other colleges including Drake University, University of Minnesota, and Hamline University.

Before each of the trials started, Luther was assigned the side of plaintiff or defendant. After receiving their side, the team then debated a case which was sent to every school nationwide at the beginning of the 2016-17 academic year.

The trials were judged by an assortment of lawyers, coaches from other teams, pre-law students, and judges. The points are awarded from the judges based off of categories such as professionalism of the participants and effectiveness of their argument.

The case sent to schools this year was a civil case about age discrimination in the workplace. The plot details a 50 year-old man name Riley Winter, a senior staff writer for a company recently purchased by entrepreneur Sawyer Shaw. After working for two years for his new boss, the plaintiff was fired.

Nelson said Luther’s team decided that, after reviewing the details of the case, age played a role in the firing.

“If you look at both case sides, there is clearly no dispute that he did get fired for age, or at least it looked like he did,” Nelson said. “So from the plaintiff’s side, we have to prove that Riley Winter did get fired on the basis of age discrimination. But [when we play] the defense, we have to try and prove that Sawyer Shaw never fired Riley Winter based on age, but because he was a bad writer.”

This year’s team is composed almost entirely of new members, with most of the members from last year having graduated with the exception of Morton. Morton said despite all the rookies, the team shows promise.

“Last year we had a team of tried-and-true people,” Morton said. “This year we have a really talented team. I think we have a shot of doing well,  but on the other hand, we are really young team.”

Nelson said that she feels a strong sense of camaraderie in the team, partly because they are all in the same year of school.

“We’re entirely comprised of sophomores,” Nelson said. “We’ve all gotten really close and we’ve become a little family. It has become so fun with all of us hanging out and Mock Trial is just an addiction.”

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