Wayne Law team wins Jessup international law Midwest regional competition

Wayne State University Law School's team won the U.S. Midwest Regional of the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, topping the field of 22 law schools from across the nation.

Team members are second-year students Shahad Atiya of Bloomfield Hills and Elizabeth Cacevic of Macomb Township and third-year students Milica Filipovic of Sterling Heights, Fatima Mansour of Harrison Township and Frank Moran of Rochester Hills. Professor Gregory Fox, director of Wayne Law's Program for International Legal Studies, is the team's faculty advisor.

Additionally, the team, including editor Mansour, took home the award for Best Memorial. Moran tied for Best Oralist out of nearly 90 speakers in the region.

The Jessup competition is the largest and most prestigious in the world, drawing nearly 700 law schools competing from more than 90 countries across the globe.

The regional rounds were Thursday, Feb. 19, through Sunday, Feb. 22, at Loyola University School of Law in Chicago.

Wayne Law will advance to the White & Case International Rounds of the Jessup competition from April 5 through 11 on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. As one of only 12 teams representing the United States, Wayne Law will compete against schools from across the globe in hopes of taking home the top prize. The international rounds are both an educational experience and cultural extravaganza. The weeklong schedule of events is filled with competitive matches, panel discussions and social events.

At the regional competition, the Wayne Law team went undefeated in the preliminary oral argument rounds, with four wins. Cacevic and Filipovic, arguing on behalf of the applicant, defeated teams from Chicago-Kent and the University of Chicago. Atiya and Moran, arguing on behalf of respondent, defeated teams from Northwestern University and the University of Illinois.

Wayne Law's team moved onto the quarterfinals, where Atiya and Moran defeated Nova Southeastern University. In the semifinals, Filipovic and Moran defeated the University of Buffalo, the reigning Midwest regional champion. In the final round, Filipovic and Moran defeated Case Western Reserve University to take home the regional championship.

For the Jessup competition, the International Law Students Association creates and releases a Special Agreement each fall that outlines the issues and facts behind a hypothetical international legal dispute before the International Court of Justice (World Court). Wayne Law Jessup members research, write and submit a memorial and prepare for the regional competition by participating in various moot arguments in front of faculty and practicing attorneys around the metro Detroit area. This year's problem addresses the principle of non-intervention into a state's internal matters, rights of self-determination, the process of secession and annexation, and treaty applicability under exigent circumstances.

Published: Thu, Mar 12, 2015