Law school moot team competes in Vienna

| 03/05/2018
CNS Local Life

(L-R) Oneka Thompson, Aliana Dobbs and Romina Kape at the moot

(CNS Local Life): The moot team from the Truman Bodden Law School (TBLS) has recently competed in the 25th Annual Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot in Vienna, Austria. Second-year students Aliana Dodds, Oneka Thompson and Romina Kape took part, accompanied by their coach, Andrew Woodcock.

The goal of the moot is “to foster the study of international commercial law and arbitration for resolution of international business disputes through its application to a concrete problem of a client and to train law leaders of tomorrow in methods of alternative dispute resolution”, stated a TBLS press release.

The moot consisted of two stages. Students were first required to draft memoranda for both the claimant and the respondent, and then they were asked to make oral submissions based on the memoranda to different panels of arbitrators.

For the oral submissions, each team participated in four moots. As the competition is geared towards both civil and common law jurisdiction, for each round of both the written and oral submissions, TBLS was paired with a university from a civil law jurisdiction.

TBLS competed against schools from the United Arab Emirates, Romania, Brazil and Switzerland. The pairings are organised in this way to expose students to the different approaches taken by those training in other legal systems.

The TBLS students gained valuable experience from the moot that can be usefully transferred into their academic and future professional careers, said the press release. Not only did the mooters improve their advocacy skills, but they also advanced their legal research skills.

Kape said of the experience: “The Vis Moot is an exceptional learning experience in and out of the boardrooms. I am honoured to have been one of the students chosen to represent TBLS and I highly encourage future students to participate in what I promise will be an unforgettable adventure in the world of advocacy.”

TBLS was one of the smallest teams in the competition, which comprised more than 300 teams amounting to nearly 3,000 participants. However, this did not hinder the team’s performance and they effectively demonstrated their understanding of the issues arising in the moot problem, said TBLS in the press release. The mooters received positive comments from a number of arbitrators in the feedback segments. Of note, a UK solicitor commended the team on their eloquence and their ability to persuasively advocate the key issues.

The three students said that not only has the moot allowed them to take what they have learned in the classroom and apply it to a practical scenario, but it has also exposed them to individuals from diverse backgrounds and enabled them to be immersed in a totally different environment to that of the Cayman Islands.

Thompson said that “doing the moot was somewhat out of my comfort zone, but I decided that in order to develop myself as an individual I had to kill my inhibitions. I was honestly surprised by my performance and I felt like I further broke out of my shell with public speaking.”

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