University of New Hampshire

School of Law

School of Law
UNH Law Students’ Victory Will Send Them To National Trial Competition Finals

UNH Law Students' Victory Will Send Them To National Trial Competition Finals

Two University of New Hampshire School of Law Students will advance to the finals in the National Trial Competition after winning the regional title on Feb. 3.

At the competition, hosted by UNH Law, students Peter Park and Matthew Cessna resoundingly defeated a team from Suffolk University Law School, traditionally a strong regional competitor. They will compete in the national finals, in San Antonio, TX, in April.

Cessna, who also received an award as one of the region’s two best advocates, and teammate Park were joined in the regionals by another UNH Law team, consisting of Meghan Moed and Kyle Robidas. The two narrowly missed advancing to the semifinals.

“These results continue a long tradition of excellence for our National Trial Competition teams,” said UNH Law Professor Charles Temple. “Advanced Trial Advocacy is a pillar in our practice-based legal education program.  In combination with our clinics and legal residency programs, this class truly produces practice-ready students. Meghan, Kyle, Peter and Matt represent the very essence of the UNH Law experience.”

The competitors are all students in the school’s Advanced Trial Advocacy class, the capstone component of the school’s well-regarded Trial Advocacy program. The Advanced Trial Advocacy class has sent two teams in the last four years to the national finals composed of 24 teams in a competition in which over 150 law schools participate.

UNH Law Professor Buzz Scherr, one of the competition’s organizers, credits the teams’ coaches, Kymme Myers, an alumna, and Judge Jacalyn Colburn, an alumna and trustee of the law school.

“They have done a remarkable job of taking students from the smallest competitor in the region and fashioning them into the best teams in the region,” Scherr said. “Congratulations to Peter, Mat, Kyle and Meghan for the quality of their work this weekend and throughout the semester.”

For Colburn, working with the students was its own reward.

“I would be honored to have any of them appear in my courtroom, and real-life clients will shortly be very lucky to have them as advocates,” she said. “It is rewarding to win competitions, but I am most proud of the advanced trial skills they have developed and the integrity and professionalism with which they utilize them. Their hard work, dedication, and commitment will continue to serve them well, not only as they vie for the national championship, but more importantly in the profession they will soon be joining.”