The UC Hastings Moot Court is once again the highest ranked moot court team in the nation.
It is not unfamiliar territory.
In 2017, UC Hastings Law was named the No. 2 Moot Court Team of the Decade, having placed first or second many times in the last two decades. The team has consistently ranked among the top 10 for close to 30 years. Yesterday, the team retook the coveted #1 slot.
“Thank you for your hard work, dedication, team spirit, time, and effort to make this result possible,” said Toni Young, longtime leader of the college’s Moot Court program, in a message to team members. “Each and every one of you played an important role in this amazing achievement. Our win, and the accompanying hardware, is always a sweet experience.”
Moot Court team members routinely refer to their colleagues as family. “We appreciate our team members, student coaches, and alumni coaches, judges, and board members,” Young said. “We guide and support each other. And this approach consistently wins top results.”
The UC Hastings Moot Court trophy case of gleaming silver cups is a Who’s Who of Moot Court alumni, many of whom are now household names in the world of top litigators. Some were graduates who did not perceive themselves growing up as lawyers and found their true calling in Moot Court. As one coach said, “Walking up to the podium is all about hard work and skill. Other than that, it’s a level playing field.”
The team is a reflection of the best of UC Hastings. The Moot Court student co-chairs, all 3Ls, are all women for the second year in a row, each with successful competition experience: Madison Boucher, Justine Jung, and Kimberly Macey. The team ranges from 70 to 80 students, and is highly competitive. Some 200 1Ls go through tryouts annually.
Competition winners who contributed to the No. 1 ranking include:
- Champions, California Regional, Thomas Tang Moot Court Competition: 2Ls Zhi Yang Tan and Christin Kim
- National Semifinalists and National Best Brief, Thomas Tang Moot Court Competition: 2Ls Zhi Yang Tan and Christin Kim
- Semifinalists, California Regional, Thomas Tang Moot Court Competition: 2Ls Stephanie Yim and Jose Meneses
- National Semifinalists, Best Petitioner Brief, National Criminal Procedure Moot Court Tournament: 3L Demiana Khoury and 2L Trevor Weitzenberg
- Best Oral Advocate, Appellate Lawyer’s Association National Moot Court Tournament: 2L Maddie Thomas
- National Finalists, Appellate Lawyer’s Association National Moot Court Tournament: 2Ls Maddie Thomas and Alexander Vicas
- Regional Finalists and Regional Best Brief, National Moot Court Competition: 3Ls Madison Boucher and Kristin Choi
- Best Final Round Oral Advocate, National Moot Court Competition: 3L Madison Boucher
- National Semifinalists, Leroy R. Hassell, Sr. National Constitutional Law Moot Court Competition: 3Ls CJ Connolly and Michael Guan
- National Quarterfinalists, National Health Law Moot Court Competition: 2Ls Nicole Aston, Brandon Hupka, and Kara Flageollet
- National Quarterfinalists, Civil Rights and Liberties Moot Court Competition: 2L Nikayla Johnson, 2L Nathan Guerrero, and 3L Hannah Diamond
- National Semifinalists and Best Petitioner Brief, National Veterans Law Moot Court Competition: 2L John Paul and 3L Hayden Soria
- National Champions, Chicago Bar Moot Court Competition– 2Ls Hannah Becker, Magdalene Bedi, and Tammy Vu
- National Quarterfinalists, Chicago Bar Moot Court Competition – 2Ls Alex Norton, Alex Tuchman, and Katie Waters
- Best Oral Advocate, Chicago Bar Moot Court Competition – 2L Alex Tuchman
- Second Best Oral Advocate, Chicago Bar Moot Court Competition – 2L Hannah Becker
Nicholas Hunt ’20 competed on Moot Court as a 2L and 3L, and now serves as an alumni coach to one of the program’s constitutional law teams. Hunt is a commissioned officer in the U.S. Navy JAG Corps, currently in the reserves while awaiting bar results and pending his active duty assignment.
“Joining Moot Court was one of the best decisions I made while at Hastings. It not only equipped me to engage in litigation before the U.S. Supreme Court immediately after graduation through the Hastings Appellate Project,” he said, “but I am now part of the Moot Court family, which is an unprecedented alumni network.”
“UC Hastings produces powerhouse litigators, and the strength of our Moot Court Team is just one reason why,” Chancellor and Dean David Faigman said. “Congratulations to this year’s team. I am confident we will see at least some of their names in headlines in years to come.”