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1L Oral Advocacy Competition​

The primary goal of the Michigan Law School 1L Oral Advocacy Competition is to give students an opportunity to practice and hone their oral appellate advocacy skills during their first year.  By providing this experience in a low-stress environment, the competition encourages 1Ls to participate even if they have no prior debate, mock trial, or public speaking experience.  The 1L Oral Advocacy Competition is unique among top law schools.

A small group of prior participants organizes the competition every year.  The competition is centered around a closed-universe packet, designed by the board, and is based on an equivocal constitutional question.  Upperclassmen are the judges in the early rounds of the competition, and feedback is provided to1Ls after every round of the competition in order to help students rapidly improve their skills.  In the later rounds, professors and practicing attorneys judge the arguments.The competition also organizes networking and learning events for its participants.  Practicing attorneys from the country's best law firms and public interest organizations travel to the University to give advice about advocacy.  

The competition requires little time investment from the 1L class. No participation is required in the Fall semester.  The competition usually starts in early February, with informational events beginning in January.