Case Mastery

Over Thanksgiving break, the Finance Committee of the Associated Students of Whitman College helped the Whitman College Moot Court Team obtain funding to compete in the American Collegiate Moot Court Association’s Western Regional Competition in Anaheim, California. My fellow team captain Yu Jian Wang and I spent a significant amount of time preparing. We learned to analyze Supreme Court cases efficiently and effectively, gaining a deep understanding of Supreme Court and Circuit Court cases pertaining to the First and Fifth amendments to the United States constitution.

At the competition, we applied these cases to two separate challenges to the 2006 Fair Education Act. Specifically, we had to address claims that the Fair Education Act violated the Free Exercise rights of a specific religious institution and that the Act similarly burdened the Fifth amendment rights of an individual affected directly by it. Both of us had the opportunity to argue in front of real judges and attorneys on both sides of the issue.

The Whitman College Moot Court Team is a growing body. While only two students went to the competition this year, we plan to send larger groups in the future. The skills that Yu Jian and I developed and the cases we mastered will be a boon to the team in the future. The competition went well and the trip went off without a hitch.

If you are interested in getting in involved with Moot Court at Whitman, contact me, NoahLani Litwinsella, at with questions.

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