National Trial Team

The National Trial Team is a hard-working, competitive, highly skilled group of men and women who compete in a variety of inter-school mock trial competitions throughout the country. Over the years, the team has consistently placed among the top law school teams in the country. Trial team competition teaches students how to meet the practical challenges courtroom lawyers face in the intensely competitive arena of mock trial tournaments. Students are taught how to try cases. That means, in addition to polishing and honing their basic advocacy skills, students are taught how to analyze and master a trial file, take control of the courtroom, discipline hostile and aggressive witnesses, handle difficult judges and turn the law of evidence into their ally. The trial team experience teaches students how to be trial lawyers - how to win fairly and squarely.

The trial team members are chosen through a competitive selection process. Membership brings academic credit. Team members enroll in two Advanced Trial Advocacy Courses: Pre-Trial Motions Practice and Evidence Strategies. In their first year of membership, students earn 4 credits. In their second year on the team, students earn 3 credits. Team members try at least two cases per year – one fall and one spring.

Auditions Information Generally, Trial Team auditions are held in the beginning of April of current academic year and again in early September of next academic year. All current students may audition in April; all current students, beyond their first year, may audition in September. Students who audition in April are encouraged to audition, again, in September. NOTE: Audition times are scheduled every 10 minutes during all audition days/times listed.

Audition Information - Spring 2015

Spring auditions for spots on the 2015-16 Trial Team for current students will be held on Tuesday, April 14, 9am-4pm and, if needed, Wednesday, April 15, starting at 9am. INFORMATION SESSIONS will be held on WEDNESDAY, APRIL 8 and THURSDAY, APRIL 9 at 12pm in Room K1D. You may sign up for a spring audition time beginning April 14 via email to mwilson6@temple.edu or stopping by the Trial Advocacy Office, K612, between 10am-4pm.

Fall auditions for spots on the 2015-16 Trial Team for all current students beyond their first year will be held in the beginning of September. Dates and times will be posted when determined.

The fall audition is divided into two rounds. In Round 1, you will be asked to give a closing speech for either the plaintiff or the defense (your choice) in a mock file which will be posted. You may be interrupted and asked to address a particular part of the case. You may also be asked to speak extemporaneously about a topic of our choosing. If you get called back for Round 2, you will be assigned a partner and asked to try the case -- that is, selective parts of the mock file in a limited amount of time against two other advocates. Finally, you may be interviewed about your background, schedule and commitment. At the end of the fall auditions, the names of the members of the 2015-2016 trial team will be posted.

Recent Trial Team coaches

Barbara Ashcroft is a former Montgomery County Assistant District Attorney and is currently the Director of the LL.M. In Trial Advocacy Program at Temple and an Associate Professor.

Marian Braccia is a Philadelphia Assistant District Attorney. While at Temple, she won the Criminal Justice Competition at Quinnipiac and was a National Quarter-Finalist.

Jennifer Bretschneider is a former Philadelphia Assistant District Attorney assigned to the Family Violence & Sexual Assault Unit and Homicide Unit. She is currently the Director of Experiential Programs and Associate Professor of Law at Temple.

Brian Burack is a Chester County Assistant District Attorney. While at Temple, Brian was an NTC Regional Champion.

Carrie Cinquanto is a former Philadelphia Public Defender and Director of LL.M. In Trial Advocacy at Temple. She is currently a managing member of Cornerstone Legal Consultants.

Anthony Coccerino is an Assistant District Attorney in Montgomery County.  While at Temple, Anthony won the Capitol City Challenge.

Cathy Cramer is an associate at Casarino, Christman, Shalk, Ransom, & Doss. While at Temple, Cathy won the National Civil Rights Competition, and was a finalist in the AAJ Regional Competition, and the Fordham Trial Competition.

Christopher de-Barrena Sarobe is a Chester County Assistant District Attorney assigned to the drug unit. He has coached invitational winners and was a National Quarter-Finalist.

Alex Gosfield is a Chester County Assistant District Attorney. While at Temple, Alex was a National Finalist.

Sara Jacobson is a former Philadelphia Assistant Public Defender. She is currently the Director of Trial Advocacy Programs and an Associate Professor at Temple.

Samantha E. Jones is an associate at Kessler, Topaz, Meltzer, and Check, LLP. While at Temple, she was both a member of the National Trial Team and the President of the Moot Court Honors Society.

Maureen McCartney is an Assistant United States Attorney and former Director of Trial Advocacy at Temple. Maureen has coached multiple regional, invitational, and national championship teams.

Ben McKenna is an Assistant District Attorney in Montgomery County. While at Temple, Ben won the Capitol City Challenge and the National Civil Rights Competition. He was a semifinalist in the South Texas Challenge and garnered individual best advocate awards.

Cindy Morgan is a Chester County Assistant District Attorney. While at Temple, Cindy won the Capitol City Challenge, was a finalist in the AAJ Regional Competition, and was a finalist at the Fordham Trial Competition.

Justin Oshana is an Assistant Defender at the Defender Association of Philadelphia and former JAG officer. While at Temple, he won the Tournament of Champions, was a two time Regional Champion and National Quarter-Finalist, and served as the President of the Moot Court Honor Society. He also has an LLM in Trial Advocacy from Temple.

Mia Roberts Perez is a former Philadelphia Assistant Public Defender in the Major Trials unit and currently runs her own criminal defense practice. While at Temple, Mia won the Tournament of Champions and was a finalist at the American Trial Lawyers Association (ATLA) national championship. She was also on the National Black Law Students Association (BLSA) Mock Trial Championship Team in 2005.

Jim Price is an Assistant District Attorney in Montgomery County. While at Temple, Jim won the Regional Trial Competition (RTC) and was a semifinalist in the Daniel Competition.

Nyssa Taylor is an Assistant Public Defender who has worked in both the Federal and State Offices in the Appeals Unit.