The Moot Court Honor Society
The Moot Court Honor Society is an organization of outstanding law students who are devoted to excellence in written and oral advocacy. A staple at Temple Law School, The Moot Court Honor Society has produced many of Pennsylvania’s most respected jurists.
Moot Court members are selected as second-year and third-year law students through the Samuel Polsky Selection Competition, which is held during the fall semester. Polsky participants research and write an appellate brief, then argue both sides of the case before experienced attorneys who serve as appellate court justices. Students receiving the highest scores for brief writing and oral argument are invited to join the Society.
New inductees argue again in a semi-final round, from which the four best advocates are chosen to argue before practicing jurists in a final competition in the law school’s well-appointed Duane, Morris & Hecksher Moot Court Room. First and second place winners are chosen during this event, followed by an induction ceremony for new members before law school administrators, faculty and students, and the finest advocates from the Philadelphia legal community.
During the spring semester, new members are enrolled in a three-credit Appellate Advocacy course in which they research and write a brief on a current United States Supreme Court case that has not been decided. The case is argued during the I. Herman Stern Competition. The Appellate Advocacy course satisfies the law school’s upper level Research Writing requirement. The final grade in the course depends on the quality of the brief and performance in the Stern Cometition. The winners of the Final Round are sent to the American Bar Association National Moot Court Competition.
During the second year of membership in the Moot Court Honor Society, members must participate in at least one of the many Moot Court competitions offered by law schools throughout the country, assist in the administration of the Polsky and Stern competitions, and attend lectures on appellate advocacy given by professors and guest speakers. Third-year students who complete all Moot Court obligations earn two ungraded credits.
Philip C. Jessup International Moot Court Honor Society
The Philip C. Jessup International Moot Court Competition is the world’s largest, with participants from over 500 schools in more than 80 countries. The competition centers on issues of public international law and a hypothetical dispute among fictional countries before the International Court of Justice, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations.
Competing teams must each produce written briefs and participate in oral arguments representing both the applicant and respondent sides of the dispute. Temple Law competes against other U.S. law schools in regional rounds. The international round, held every year in Washington, D.C., pits the dozen or so winners of the U.S. regional competitions against teams from foreign countries who have won their own national competitions.
Temple Law fields a team in the Jessup Moot Court Competition each year. Temple teams have had notable success in recent years, garnering team and individual recognition in the regional rounds and twice advancing to the international round. Selection to Temple’s Jessup Moot Court team is made by student members of the team. Team members organize their own research, writing, and oral preparations with guidance from members of Temple’s international law faculty, who serve as advisors.
Rubin Public Interest Law Honor Society
Temple University Beasley School of Law has long fostered an environment where the values of public service work are supported and cultivated. The Rubin Public Interest Law Honor Society was created to acknowledge students whose exceptional dedication to public service gives them the energy to go beyond the rigors of their academic curriculum. In realizing Temple’s tradition of public service, the Rubin Public Interest Law Honor Society recognizes our students whose public service efforts exceed the expectation of a part-time job or a clinical class. These efforts include providing legal services to underserved communities and addressing important public issues without receiving pay or academic credit.