More than one hundred Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) teams competed in the 2021 ABA Law Student Division Client Counseling Competition in March. And only one team made it to the top.
William & Mary Law School’s team of Katheryn Maldonado ’21 and Nick Armah ’21 are the competition’s national title champions.
“This is a fantastic accomplishment for Kat and Nick!” said Yasmine Palmer ’21, President of the William & Mary ADR. “I had the opportunity to observe their first few National rounds and it was wonderful to see how well they had adapted their unique and efficient teamwork dynamic to fit a virtual format.”
Maldonado and Armah competed in the event on Saturday, March 20, 2021. The topic for this year’s competition was “Entertainment and Amateur Sports.”
The Client Counseling competition addresses fundamental skills necessary for all successful attorneys, namely the ability to interview, counsel, and support a client through their legal issue. Competitors conduct an initial interview with a person playing the role of the client and then address both the client’s legal and non-legal needs. Students are called on to explain various aspects of the attorney-client relationship, build rapport, determine client goals, and consider applicable law and options that may be available to the client.
Second place in the competition went to the team from Mercer University’s Walter F. George School of Law; third place went to Campbell University’s Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law.
As national champions, Maldonado and Armah have been invited to represent the United States at the 2021 Brown-Mosten International Client Consultation Competition, hosted by Swansea University in Wales. The competition will be held virtually this year from April 6-11.
“Kat and Nick are a formidable pair, and the ADR team cannot wait to watch them take their talents to the international level,” Palmer said.
The ADR team is an ABA Student Division Program dedicated to helping William & Mary law students hone practical skills through competitions that focus on client counseling and methods of dispute resolution other than litigation. ADR team members compete against each other to advance to the regional level in national competitions.
In recent years, ADR members have competed in the ABA Law Student Division Negotiation Competition, the ABA LASD Client Counseling Competition and the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution Advocacy in Mediation Competition.
About William & Mary Law School
Legal education in a university setting began at William & Mary in 1779. Now in its third century, America's first law school continues its historic mission of educating citizen lawyers who are prepared both to lead and to serve.