Even before she became a law student, Jenifer Pfanzelt had a run of success competing on undergraduate mock trial competitions held at Baylor Law School. After all, the newest Leon Jaworski Scholarship winner won multiple awards at tournaments hosted and held at the law school.
Pfanzelt, who began her time as a Baylor Law student just a couple of weeks ago, received the Best Advocate Honorable Mention award at Baylor's tournament in 2006, when she was just a freshman undergraduate. And the awards just kept coming. By the time she received her bachelor's degree, Pfanzelt had received a Best Advocate award, another Best Advocate Honorable Mention award and was a member of the team that placed fifth, all at competitions held at the law school.
A native of Irving, Texas, Pfanzelt majored in literature at the University of Texas at Dallas. She had an illustrious high school career in which she helped found the mock trial team. By her junior year, her team was ranked second in the state, and by her senior year, she was recruited by the Honor's Dean at UTD to help found its mock trial program.
As a freshman at UTD, she served as captain of one of three teams; was president and captain her sophomore through senior years; educated team members who had no mock trial experience about the rules of evidence and tournament rules; and oversaw all examinations, openings and closing for the team.
"For me, mock trial has been much more than a hobby during those eight years," she said. "My participation did not fizzle during the difficult first year of each program. I saw them both through, and even after graduation returned to help run UTD tournaments. I come to Baylor with the same underdog competitiveness and indefatigable spirit that I possessed my freshman years of high school and college."
Pfanzelt can't wait for the chance on a Baylor Law trial advocacy team, but she knows she must put her time in as a 1L before she has that chance. She is settling in at the school and said she particularly likes her torts class taught by Professor Jim Underwood and her contracts class taught by Professor Larry Bates.
"Both those professors have chosen cases that are extremely interesting to study. That certainly helps when you are learning," she said.