Students compete in Vis East Moot

A team of six La Trobe Law students to compete in Vis East Moot in Hong Kong

A team of six La Trobe Law students will travel to Hong Kong this month to compete in the Vis East Moot, one of the largest and most prestigious international commercial arbitration moots in the world.

La Trobe Law School Dean, Professor Fiona Kelly, said the Vis East Moot is a fantastic opportunity for law students to develop their skills and make connections.

“Participation in international moots provides Law students with the chance to develop advanced written, oral advocacy and teamwork skills that are the perfect preparation for legal practice. The connections created through mooting, with team members as well as coaches, alumni, and students at other law schools, often last a lifetime," Professor Kelly said.

Hundreds of universities from around the world compete in the Vis East Moot each year. The competition takes the form of a mock-arbitration, requiring students to research international commercial arbitration and the international sale of goods.

After receiving a problem, each team works together to prepare and submit a memorandum for claimant and a memorandum for respondent. This culminates in oral hearings in Hong Kong between 10-17 March 2024.

Elly-May Dreier, Bachelor of Criminology/Law student, said she had thoroughly enjoyed the preparations for the Vis East Moot.

“The best part so far has been getting to work with my teammates and getting into the nitty-gritty of how the law works. I have been really enjoying the practice moots, particularly those that have been with La Trobe Alumni. It is great to see where their Vis journey has taken them and how it has helped them with their legal careers.”

Fellow moot participant, Shaun James, agrees that the preparations for the Vis East Moot have been beneficial.

“The practice moots have been an incredible chance to be exposed to different university teams from all around the world. It has also been a great opportunity to finally present the arguments we have been working on for months.”

Christina Mikhael, Bachelor of Laws/Arts student, said the moots have changed her perspective on the law.

“I’ve learnt that the law is not always as black and white as it seems. The other major change for me was being able to understand that each side will always have some different point of law to argue.”

Similarly, Bachelor of Law/Global Studies student Ryan Gambin says the practice moots have given him a new appreciation for the grey areas of the law.

“The moots have confirmed for me the fact that all good advocacy is found in the grey. There is no black and white answer in law. It is about how creatively you can explore the strengths and concessions you will need to make. However, that is all part of the fun!”

The La Trobe Law team have been supported by the La Trobe Vis alumni as well as various members of the legal profession including judges, barristers, lawyers and academics.

Alex Vander and Flinn Olarenshaw have both enjoyed the camaraderie of being part of the moot team.

“It’s a cheesy sentiment but the best part about it has been the friends I’ve made along the way. To work alongside some incredibly talented students has been amazing. And, to consider them friends is an even greater privilege,” Alex says.

“I’ve enjoyed meeting different university teams from all around the world. It has been great to work alongside other Law students and experience the team camaraderie of the moots,” Flinn adds.

The La Trobe Law School wishes the Vis team the absolute best of luck in Hong Kong!