The Moot Court Board is a student-run organization in the Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University that is dedicated to the development of students’ written and oral appellate advocacy skills. The principal activities of the board include the administration of two intramural competitions each year and participation in the selection and preparation of Hofstra Law students to compete against students from other law schools in regional, national and international moot court competitions. In competition, students gain the experience of arguing a simulated appeal, usually to the Supreme Court of the United States, analyzing complex legal issues and responding to questions posed by judges in oral argument. The skills of persuasive brief writing and oral persuasion are invaluable to law students, both during law school and in employment, and are prized by prospective employers.
The board administers two intramural competitions each year through which members of the board are selected. The fall semester competition is open to upper-class students and transfer students; the spring semester competition is open to first-year students. Board members help prepare competitors for oral argument and conduct practice rounds leading up to the competition; board members also serve as judges for the preliminary rounds of the competitions. The final round of each competition is adjudicated by a panel of distinguished judges and appellate practitioners.
The board also plays an important part in Hofstra Law’s interscholastic moot court competition program. The board helps organize tryouts each fall for the selection of students to represent Hofstra in regional, national and international moot court competitions against other law schools. Board members also assist in the faculty-taught Advanced Appellate Skills seminar, which is designed exclusively for students who are selected from those tryouts — largely from board membership — to represent Hofstra Law in interscholastic competitions.