BLSA Mock Trial Team Advances to National Finals

January 14, 2019

The Texas A&M University School of Law Black Law Students Association's (BLSA) mock trial team advanced to the national finals. Third-year students Enrica Martey, Sara Vargas, Regina Palmer-Coleman and Shawn Pullum placed second at the southwest region's Constance Baker Motley Mock Trial Competition (CBMMTC) held in New Orleans ​in early January. The team was coached by Doug Greene.

The team will compete in the national finals in Little Rock in March.

TAMU Law BLSA mock trial team 2019Texas A&M School of Law's BLSA mock trial team members Sara Vargas, Regina Palmer-Coleman, Enrica Martey and Shawn Pullum advance to the national finals

According to Jennifer Ellis, director of advocacy programs, the students sacrificed a large part of their holiday break to practice and prepare.

"It is exciting for their hard work to pay off. Enrica Martey is a veteran competitor who made it to the national finals last year, but the other three team members were competing for the first time," said Ellis.

The CBMMTC competition simulates a civil trial proceeding where each team presents opening statements, direct and cross examination of witnesses, and closing arguments. Advocates are evaluated on their overall courtroom presence, command of the Federal Rules of Evidence and Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, teamwork, and accuracy of objections. Each trial lasts approximately two and one-half hours.

Sara Vargas Gibson scholarship3L Sara Vargas, recipient of the Traci A. Gibson Legacy Scholarship

At the competition, third-year student Sara Vargas, president of the Texas A&M School of Law Black Law Students Association, was awarded the Traci A. Gibson Legacy Scholarship, an annual scholarship given to a member of the Southwest region of the National Black Law Students Association for their commitment and service to the organization.

Learn more about BLSA:

BLSA fosters and develops professional competence and leadership, while providing a forum in which the unique needs of Black and other minority, law students may be addressed. Openness of communication within the law school community is encouraged.

Follow Texas A&M Law BLSA on Facebook.

Learn more about the Texas A&M School of Law Advocacy Program:

The Advocacy Program at Texas A&M School of Law is a key component of Texas A&M School of Law’s Experiential Education program, making Aggie law students practice-ready. Directed by Jennifer Ellis, the Advocacy Program consists of three disciplines: appellate advocacy (moot court), trial advocacy (mock trial) and dispute resolution (mediation, negotiation and client counseling).

Our Moot Court, Mock Trial and Aggie Dispute Resolution teams are nationally recognized. Since the law school’s inception, the program has received:

  • 3 international championships
  • 12 national championships
  • 23 regional championships
  • 1 state championship
  • 1​6 best advocate awards
  • 13 best brief awards