Where are you now?
I am now a senior at Spain Park High School, but I will be attending the University of Alabama (“UA”) in the fall.
How, if at all, did the Empire help you get there?
Empire connected me with other students who also plan to attend UA. We grew close and we now plan to stick together in college and join the mock trial team. UA’s mock trial team is intense and requires a level of expertise that only Empire can provide. With the experience that Empire Mock Trial gave me, I will be more able and prepared to compete on a level not usually expected from freshmen in college.
What’s your favorite Empire moment?
New York was hit with Hurricane Sandy during the Empire Mock Trial Competition in 2012. Most teams were stuck in the hotel for an extra four days, and while most people may see this as a bad thing, we made the most of it. We took the opportunity to make lasting memories and lasting friendships. Over the course of the competition, we met teams from Colorado and South Carolina, which is one of the coolest parts of Empire Mock Trial. We met people from all over the country and all over the world, and when one of the worst natural disasters in history hit New York, we pulled together and made memories we will never forget. In the extra days that we were there, instead of sitting in our rooms, we hosted what was known as the Hurricane Invitational. We held this competition in the hotel lobby with all the couches and chairs we could find. We decided that we were going to have those who participated at Empire as attorneys to switch roles with their witnesses, so the attorneys were witnesses and the witnesses were attorneys. We also filled a bowl with strips of paper that had adjectives describing the type of character each witness would be. Mine was “frat boy.” I had to act as a clichéd fraternity pledge, while other witnesses were told to play as “batman” or “southern gentlemen.” It was a blast and I would not have wanted to spend my time during the hurricane with anyone else.
How would you describe the Empire to someone that has never been?
Empire Mock Trial gives high school students the opportunity to meet people from around the country and around the world. Empire allows student who are interested in mock trial to meet and connect. That’s what makes Empire so special to me. It allows me to meet people around the world who are interested in what I am interested in and creates an experience I will never forget.