Charles C. Papy, Jr. Moot Court Teams Experience Success in Three Prestigious Competitions

Miami Law students win Best Brief Award, Best Oralist, and Second Best Brief Award at the Hunton Andrews Kurth, Evan A. Evans, and NYU Immigration Law moot competitions.
Charles C. Papy, Jr. Moot Court Teams Experience Success in Three Prestigious Competitions
Lauren O’Neil, 3L, and Bailey Beauchamp, 3L 

Miami Law’s Charles C. Papy, Jr. Moot Court teams recently experienced success in three moot competitions.

Third-year law students Bailey Beauchamp and Lauren O’Neil won the Best Brief award at the 2023 Hunton Andrews Kurth Moot Court National Championship. The top 16 moot teams of the nation were invited to represent in the competition, and in addition to winning Best Brief, Miami Law’s team finished as quarterfinalists. 

“We were very excited to win the best brief,” said Beauchamp. “We worked so hard on the research, editing, and formatting of our brief, so it was very rewarding to have been selected as the best brief. This was our last opportunity to compete in a moot court competition, so it was really exciting to finish on a high note.” 

“I am grateful for the experience and honored to bring home an award to Miami Law and our moot court board, which has given me so much,” said O’Neil.

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Jacob Niergarth and Destini Fernandez

The Hunton Andrews Kurth Moot Court National Championship gives the nation’s 16 best moot court programs the right to compete for the national title in the 15th annual competition hosted by the Blakely Advocacy Institute at the University of Houston Law Center and sponsored by Andrews Kurth. Moot court programs qualify for the National Championships based on points accumulated during the previous year at nationwide competitions.

“We prepared for the oral argument component of the competition with help from our incredible coaches Susan Kornspan (UM Law alumna and Charles C. Papy, Jr., Moot Court Board Alumni Advisor) and Professor of Legal Writing Erin Okuno,” said Beauchamp. “We also had many practice rounds with professors, local practitioners, and judges to help us prepare for oral arguments. Additionally, we had the help of our Board members who judged practice rounds for us. We were very excited to advance to the quarterfinals in oral arguments.”

Third-year Jacob Niergarth won Best Oralist for the second consecutive year in the Evan A. Evans constitutional Law Moot Court Competition in Madison, Wisconsin. The team of Niergarth and 3L Destini Fernandez competed against 27 top teams and finished as quarterfinalists.

“When I won Best Oralist, I was thrilled and proud to move the University of Miami Moot Court program one step closer to being No. 1 in the nation,” said Niergarth. “Currently we are at No. 2 in the country, and every individual award and advancement deeper in a tournament secures points that control the ranking. I was very touched when the organizers of the competition (students at University of Wisconsin Law School) told me that my win had to be some kind of record, and that they could not recall any other time in the history of the Evans competition that the same student had won Best Oralist for two consecutive years.” 

Jessica Duque, J.D.’21, and Fahim Gulamali, J.D. ’21, coached the team.

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Benjamin Brooks and Robert Keilson

Miami Law’s team of Benjamin Brooks, 3L, and Robert Keilson, 3L, won the Second-Best Brief award and finished as semifinalists in the NYU 18th Immigration Law Competition. 

“My teammate Ben Brooks and I prepared for this competition over our winter break and into the early weeks of the spring semester,” said Keilson. “For our brief, we prepared by researching and writing our individual issues, working together to create a cohesive product, and generally supporting each other throughout the writing process. Additionally, we prepared for our oral arguments with countless practice rounds and with the help of our amazing coaches Annie Rosenthal, J.D. ’21, and Elizabeth Montano, J.D. ’19.” 

Read more about Miami Law’s moot court programs.