Mock Trial Bangs the Gavel on Successful Year
By MONECA TREMANS and BRENDAN JOHNSON
From the classroom to the courtroom, Midwood’s Mock Trial Team has worked hard to defeat their competition from Tottenville to Curtis to Regis High School. However, they finally met their match against Forest Hills High School on Tuesday, April 2 at the U.S. District Courthouse.
The team has been working with lawyer Scott Henny at a law firm at Wall Street every Tuesday to prepare for their competitions with help from their coaches Mr. Eugene Resnick and Ms. Taylor Grode.
“Ms. Grode and Mr. Resnick help the witnesses and lawyers with what they are going to say on the stand,” said Sezer Benoit Savci ’20. “We draft down what we’re going to say, and they help us correct it.”
Captain of the Mock Trial team Jennifer Yakubov ’20 has also been guiding the team to success.
“Being the Mock Trial Captain is a lot of hard work and pressure because the whole team relies on me to lead them,” said Yakubov, “but it’s an amazing and fulfilling learning experience. I couldn’t have asked for a better team.”
The team is presented with a fictional case every starting season.
“In early November we get our case the New York State Bar Association,” said Yakubov. “All of New York State gets the same case, and each school has two competing sides within a team: the plaintiff and the defense.”
This year, they worked on a case titled “Harley Davidson v DHP.”
“There are so many subtle points to this case,” Mr Resnick said. “Every time you read through it you reveal more points. It’s like an onion with many layers.”
This year, the team has 14 members, 12 of whom are active competitors. During the actual competition, there can be two winners. The winners are chosen on a point-based system or by whether the case could have been legally won in an actual court case.
“Mock Trial simulates a real court atmosphere,” Jenna Bolonik ’21 said. “We’re taught how to make and reply to objections like real lawyers. I joined Mock Trial because I want to be a lawyer when I grow up, and this is a great experience.”
Next year, Mock Trial tryouts will be held in mid-October. Those who try out must choose an argument and argue for both positions.
“Being on the Mock Trial team has been such a unique experience,” said Makayla Melendez ’22. “Not only have I learned to be tactful as well as how to be a better public speaker, but I’ve also learned a lot about teamwork.”