A team from Baylor Law School took first place at the recent Transactional Law Meet Midwest Regional and qualified for the national competition. Not bad, considering it was the first time Baylor Law had sent a team to the meet. Showing off their negotiating skills at the regional competition were Lindy Nesbitt, Jeremy Sheng and Mark Shutt. Mackenzie Jackson served as student coach while the team was coached by Trenton Hood.
The competition measures students' mastery of skills in structuring and negotiating deals. This year's challenge involved the negotiation of an executive employment agreement for a new chief executive officer. During the meet, students worked in teams to draft a transactional agreement and to negotiate its provisions with opposing student teams. Teams were judged by a panel of experts from practice who evaluated the teams' success in achieving the goals of the parties to the transaction.
"The meet was great practical experience. Even though it is still an academic exercise, the competition gave us all an opportunity to really see what it was like to negotiate a deal," Sheng said.
He said the team prepared for the meet mainly by creating its term sheet and its markups. Team members also would discuss strategies and scenarios that they might encounter during the negotiation and how to appropriately handle the issues in the best interests of their client.
"Other than that, our strategy was to remain flexible and unscripted so that we could readily adapt to different scenarios," he said.
The national finals will be held at Drexel University's Earle Mack School of Law on March 29-30. Sheng said there will be a major change in the problem from the regional level to the national level, and the team will need to adjust its term sheet and prepare new markups.
The Transactional Law Meet Regional was the third advocacy competition won in 2012 by a Baylor Law team. Two Baylor Law teams have qualified for the National Trial Competition after winning the regional competition, and a team from Baylor Law won the National Security Moot Court Competition at George Washington University's School of Law.