Baylor Client Counseling Team Moves On to Nationals

Feb. 19, 2008

by Julie Carlson, director of communications, Baylor Law School, (254) 710-6681

Baylor law students Sarah LaCour and Stacy Villescas won first place in the American Bar Association's Client Counseling regional competition, held Feb. 16 at Baylor Law School. The team will advance to the national competition, which will be held March 8-9 at Pace University School of Law in White Plains, N.Y.

In achieving the first-place win, LaCour and Villescas had to battle a fellow Baylor team of Jolie McCuistion and Scott Fisher in the finals. The Baylor teams are coached by Waco attorney Vik Deivanayagam, who also serves as an adjunct professor of law. Student coaches were Brandy Harmon and Amber Steiss.

"This success is yet another for an interscholastic competition program that experiences consistent success," said Baylor Law Dean Brad Toben. "We enjoy the satisfaction of winning so regularly because we have bright and gifted students who have an impressive work ethic. Added to that, we have talented and dedicated coaches like Adjunct Professor Deivanayagam. When we combine first-rate students with gifted teaching - something we do throughout our program - good things are bound to happen."

The regional competition featured three preliminary rounds made up of 10 teams. Six teams competed in the semifinals while the finals featured three teams. Teams from Texas, Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming and Utah took part in the regional tournament. A team from SMU also made the regional finals.

Client Counseling Competition simulates a law office consultation in which law students, acting as attorneys, are presented with a client matter. They conduct an interview with a person playing the role of the client and then explain how they would proceed further in the hypothetical situation. The regional competition dealt with a situation involving civil liberties/civil rights.

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