Students Cap Intensive Trial Advocacy Program with Simulated Trials
Web Editor - Published: June 2, 2008

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Kenneth J. Lopez, Esq. addresses the audience

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Left to Right: Dean Ammons, Kenneth J. Lopez, Esq., Professor John Nivala, Vera M. Holmes, Esq., Edmund M. Hillis, Esq., and
Professor Cindy Faulkner.

On Thursday May 22nd, students in the Intensive Trial Advocacy Program got the opportunity to conduct simulated jury trials before visiting jurors and the ITAP faculty of attorneys, judges, and law professors. The simulated trials allowed the students, who are entering their final year of law school, to practice skills honed over the course of the program, which began on May 15th.

During the first six days of the program, the students worked on trial preparation including documentation, witness preparation, opening statements, direct and cross-examination of witnesses including expert witnesses, and closing arguments. In preparation for the final simulated trials, students practiced each step of the trial process, gaining experience and confidence along the way. Finally, the students had to assemble all of those skills to conduct the simulated trial at the end of the program.

As part of the ITAP program, students were treated to a guest lecture from Widener Law alum Kenneth J. Lopez, Esq., the Founder and CEO of Animators at Law in Alexandria, VA. A graduate of the University of Mary Washington, Mr. Lopez graduated from Widener Law in 1995. Specializing in trial exhibits, animation, and graphics, Animators at Law has consulted with many of the countries largest firms on a variety of high-profile cases.

After a general welcome from Widener Law Dean Linda L. Ammons and introductory remarks from Professor John Nivala, the Director of the Advocacy and Technology Institute, Mr. Lopez spoke to the assembled students about how to be professional. At the conclusion of his insightful presentation, Mr. Lopez took questions from the audience.