As a transfer student from New Jersey, I had no idea what life at Juniata would be like. I knew that there were a plethora of opportunities and a close-knit community, however, it was hard to truly understand the scope of everything until I came here. I knew that there were a dozen clubs that I wanted to join, but choosing which clubs to actually join was difficult. Then, one random day, my friend told me that I should go to a Mock Trial meeting with her.
“Hm…Mock Trial?” I thought, “Is that something I will even like?”
I decided to attend the Mock Trial club’s first meeting and I am extremely grateful that I did. My eyes lit up at the first meeting when Attorney Andrews, the man who coaches and runs the club, told us about all of the places we would travel to in the future. We will go to North Carolina, Upstate New York, Penn State and even California. He told us that we would be split into small teams, and each person would be given a role as an attorney or witness. For the competition in California which will be happening in November, there are only 10 spots. Individually, we each tried out for a spot by preparing an opening statement or by being a witness. I tried out by writing and preparing an opening statement and luckily…I got one of the spots!
This is my first time doing Mock Trial. I have been on the team for over one month now and I love it. To be realistic, it is a lot of work. I study every week and we have meetings every Sunday. However, if you or someone you know is planning on joining, it’s worth it. I am pushed to perform my best every single week by expanding my public speaking skills, writing skills, legal knowledge, and critical thinking skills.
This past Sunday, our Juniata Mock Trial team had a scrimmage against Bucknell University at the Hollidaysburg Courthouse. I was a witness for this trial, which was a fun role to play. We had two teams compete, and both of our teams won! Even though we are competitive and want to win, each team member supports each other and wants to see everyone do well collectively. In the end, I am extremely happy I just said “yes” to attending that first meeting. I was nervous, but you can’t let those nerves stop you from exploring your interests and true potential.
–Tessa Senel, Professional Writing POE with an Environmental Emphasis,
Fluffy haired, rock climbing, nature loving, tea enthusiast