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California Western Students Win National Juvenile Law Competition

Third-year students Rachel M. Ferguson and Susan M. Sindelar hold the National Juvenile Law Competition first place trophy

A California Western student appellate team recently won the 19th National Juvenile Law Moot Court Competition, held February 7-8 at Whittier Law School in Costa Mesa, California.

Third-year students Rachel M. Ferguson and Susan M. Sindelar defeated a team from Chapman University School of Law in the final round of a competition that included law school teams from UC Hastings, University of Cincinnati, Valparaiso, George Washington, Santa Clara, UC Davis, Tuoro, DePaul, and Northeastern.

In addition to winning the prestigious competition, Ferguson and Sindelar together won Best Brief, with Ferguson winning Best Oralist and Sindelar placing third in that category.

“Bravo to our students, faculty, staff, and alumni, who worked together to make this happen,” said California Western President and Dean Niels B. Schaumann. “Together they demonstrate what talent, hard work, and dedication can accomplish.”

Ferguson and Sindelar were coached by San Diego attorneys Lynda Romero and Sara Gros-Cloren, who received much praise from Professor Mario G. Conte, faculty advisor to the Moot Court Honors Board.

Conte said, “We owe a real debt of gratitude to Professors Thyfault and Hargrove, as well. They gave generously of their time to practice with and move this team along with California Western graduate coaches Kate Clark ’10, Reem S. Khalil ’13, and Franciesca D. Balerio ’12.”

“Sindelar and Ferguson are both veteran competitors,” said Clark, who competed on the Jessup appellate team as a student. “This is Susan's third and final semester competing. Her previous appellate experience, knowledge, and leadership were an invaluable resource for the team and contributed greatly to their success.”

“This is only Rachel's second semester competing,” continued Clark. “She is clearly an amazing appellate advocate.”

Other California Western competitors included 3L Angela Porter, 2L Jennifer Monterroso, and 2L Anali Cortez, who showed complete team spirit by helping their sister competitors prepare for competition.

About California Western’s Competition Teams
California Western's Moot Court Honors Board is well-known nationally for the successes of its competition teams, and also for its consistency in developing individuals that stand out in the post-graduation applicant pool, and ultimately go on to become great attorneys.

Appellate teams write appellate briefs and then advocate their position to a panel of judges and they field questions from the bench. Teams compete intrascholastically with other California Western students in the William C. Lynch Appellate Competition, and nationally at the intercollegiate Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, the USD Criminal Procedure Moot Court Competition, Pepperdine Entertainment Law Competition, Thomas Tang Moot Court Competition, National Appellate Advocacy Competition, and the Whittier National Juvenile Moot Court Competition, among others.