The Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot looked a little different this year, as it was moved to online for the first time in the event’s history. The moot, which was scheduled to be held in Vienna, Austria, with over 400 law schools planning to attend, was canceled last month due to the COVID-19 pandemic. UIC John Marshall Law School was one of those teams expecting to compete.
The UIC John Marshall team consisted of Humza Ansari, Sara Geoghegan, Gabrielle Neace and Alexandra Pruitt. Students Lexi Hudson, Wyatt Sugrue and Skylar Young were alternates on the team and helped with research and brief writing. The team was able to still participate in the competition, with all oral arguments taking place in the middle of the night, through a teleconferencing service.
Second-year student Alexandra Pruitt received honorable mention for Individual Oralist. Pruitt was one of only two students from the United States to receive an honorable mention. This has been a big year for Pruitt, who was also named Law Student of the Year last month by National Jurist Magazine.
“A lot of hard work and effort went into this, and I couldn’t have done it without my awesome teammates and great coaches,” Pruitt said. “They’ve been amazing and I’ve learned so much from all of them. The world is in chaos right now, and this experience brought me joy at a time when I think we all need a little boost.”
The team was coached by Kristen Hudson (’03) and Daniel Saeedi (’08), both graduates of the Law School who competed at the Vienna version of the competition when they were law students. Actor Carolyn Kruse also assisted the team with their preparations.