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Free speech, cash prizes: Enter the First Amendment and Media Law Diversity Moot Court Competition

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Freedom of the Press

The annual First Amendment and Media Law Diversity Moot Court, presented by the ABA Forum on Communications Law and now in its 13th year, is designed to introduce minority law students to the practice of media law and to many of the lawyers who are active in the media law bar.

The competition offers cash awards for superior performance in appellate briefing and oral argument.

The moot court hypothetical case will involve timely issues of national significance in the field of media law. The hypothetical case for the 2019-20 Competition, for example, focused on journalists’ access to interviews in state prisons and a government agency’s retaliatory withdrawal of press credentials.

Law students interested in the Competition submit a written application, including a short essay explaining their interest in issues of media and communications law. There is no fee to apply. All applications are due and must be received no later than Midnight PDT on the deadline date. Students may apply individually or as part of two-person teams (each team member must complete an individual application).

Based on the essay submissions, up to twelve teams are selected to submit an appeal brief; applicants who did not apply as part of a team will be matched with a partner. 

The deadline to apply is Friday, August 7, 2020. You can download an application for the 2020-21 Competition here.

Students from any ABA-accredited law school are encouraged to apply to participate in the competition. Students must be members of a chapter of the National Black Law Students Association; the National Latino/a Law Student Association; the National Asian Pacific American Law Student Association; the National Native American Law Students Association; or a comparable minority law student organization at their school.

The First Amendment and Media Law Diversity Moot Court Competition is administered by the American Bar Association Forum on Communications Law. The Competition Committee, made up of volunteer scholars and practitioners from across the field of media law, will oversee the administration of the Competition.

Read the complete rules here.

ABA Law Student Division The Law Student Division empowers law student by providing them with meaningful connections to practicing professionals, job resources, relevant programming, and practical skills competitions. We represent the law student community by advocating for policies that improve legal education, champion diversity, and strengthen public service.