Zack Streeb, a junior law and society major, was judged an “outstanding attorney” in the Nov. 12-13 mock trial competition sponsored by the University of Pennsylvania Law School.
“I was ecstatic,” said Streeb, a Colorado native who plans on becoming a trial attorney. “It gave me tremendous insights into what takes place in the courtroom and it was a great real-world experience.”
“This was the first major invitational we’ve participated in, and for Zack to win an award like that is fantastic,” said Evan Laine, director of the Law and Society program and former trial attorney.
In all, almost 50 teams from such universities as Brandeis, Cornell, Johns Hopkins, Penn State and the University of Southern California competed in the two-day Quaker Classic invitational tournament at Penn. Streeb was selected as one of 11 outstanding lawyers out of some 200 participants, garnering 19 out of 20 total possible points on his performance.
The PhilaU mock trial team, part of the law and society club, had been working on this mock trial case since September, reading through the civil products liability case, gathering information, writing opening statements and preparing witnesses – also played by students – for the competition. Judges in the Quaker Classic were lawyers and third-year Penn law students.
“This is real-world learning,” Laine said. “The students are doing direct and cross-examination and putting evidence in front of the judge.”
The PhilaU mock trial team will compete in the national competition sponsored by the American Mock Trial Association in February 2011.