The San Francisco County Mock Trial program works with local public high school students. High school teams compete in the trial of a hypothetical criminal case. Each school fields a team of students to act as lawyers, witnesses, and bailiff. Students prepare their case based on a packet of witness statements and evidence.
Lawyers volunteer in the fall to coach students. They teach students the fundamentals of persuasive public speaking and evidence advocacy. Leading up to the city-wide competition in March, volunteers also critique students' performance.
During the competition in the spring, attorneys volunteer to act as scorers and judges. The citywide competition takes place at San Francisco Superior Court over four evenings in February. The winning team goes on to represent San Francisco in the statewide competition in March. The winner of the statewide competition represents California in the national competition in May.
Make a difference! To learn more about the program, and to volunteer, contact Samantha Akwei at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mock Trial – Demetria Vong-Spillan, Bank of America
I was so very impressed with the quality of the teams and their knowledge and enthusiasm. As for corporate lawyers, they should not be afraid of volunteering either as a scorer or even a presiding judge. It helped me to know that the facts, case law and grounds for objection were a closed universe, so actual courtroom knowledge (though preferable) was not an absolute necessity.