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Ateneo wins Jessup exhibition rounds; bags Stetson best memorial

2015 has been a good year so far for the Ateneo Society of International Law (ASIL). With wins in two of the most prestigious international moot court competitions, the teams have proven that Ateneo consistently ranks among the best worldwide.

Jessup Best Exhibition Team

From April 5 to 11, the White & Case International Rounds of the 56th Phillip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition was held in the Hyatt Regency Washington Hotel on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. 

The 2015 Ateneo Jessup Team succeeded in winning the Exhibition Rounds in the competition, garnering the Best Exhibition Team and Best Exhibition Memorial awards. This is the first time Ateneo has won this category, making it the second school in the competition’s history to have won both the World Championship and Exhibition Rounds. 

The team is comprised of oralists Macabulos, Nonalyn Superable (4C), Steffi Sales (3A), Cecile Danica Gotamco (3C), Liane Stella Candelario (2B), and team administrators Charlemagne Rae Chavez (4A) and Teresa Kristel Banta (1F). The team was also coached by Atty. Roland Glenn Tuazon (J.D., 2011) and Atty. Philip Gerard Dabao (J.D., 2013). 

The topic of the competition was the secession and annexation of a territory, treaty interpretation in the face of changed circumstances, and the lawfulness of countermeasures. Ateneo competed against opponents such as the University of Western Ontario (Canada), Moscow State Law Academy (Russia), Kuwait International Law School (Kuwait), and Universidad Panamericana Campus Bonaterra (Mexico).

ASIL at Jessup. Photo by Steffi Sales.

ASIL wins the Best Exhibition Team and Best Exhibition Memorial awards at Jessup. Photo by Steffi Sales.

Preparing despite short notice

The team was only able to receive the invitation to Washington during the week of final exams, therefore only allowing them a short amount of time to prepare for the competition. 

“The team focused on solicitation first as it was the only thing we could do while studying for our final exams,” says team captain Eduardo Danilo Macabulos (4A). “The time between the end of our finals and the start of the international rounds was divided between solicitation and preparations.”

Ateneo was able to score a total of 3184 raw points, which includes both the oralist and memorial scores, as well as a 4-0 record. For the memorials alone, the team garnered a score of 543. During the competition, judges are not aware if the teams they are judging are exhibition teams or not. Given the scores, if the team had been included in the bracket of competing teams, the raw points would have allowed them to qualify as the 4th seed to move on to the advanced rounds. It would also have won 3rd place in the Alona Evans Award for Best International Rounds Memorial. 

ASIL wins best overall memorial at Stetson. Photo by Mike Gerald David.

ASIL bags Overall Best Memorial at Stetson. Photo by Mike Gerald David.

Stetson Overall Best Memorial

A few days after Jessup, the Stetson University College of Law held its 19th International Environmental Moot Court Competition from April 16 to 18 at its campus in St. Petersburg, Florida. This year, the topic involved the growing concern of shark finning and the development of the practice of shark spinning, a product of exploiting a gray area in the law. Its twin issue comprises of the international trade restriction imposed by the respondent in response to shark finning and spining activities conducted in applicant.

The Ateneo team, comprised of Mike Gerald David (4A), Perpetua Calliope Ngo (3A), Mary Grace Hicban (2D), and Charmee Ann Mercado (2D), won overall Best Memorial, reaching the semifinal rounds with Hicban winning 5th Best Oralist. The team guided by their coaches, Atty. Patrick Simon Perillo (J.D., 2008) and Atty. Marvin Haduca (J.D., 2013).

For the preliminary rounds, the team successfully went against University of Jammu, Jammu and Kashmir (India), NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad (India), and The Law School of China University of Political Science and Law. The team later went against National Law University, Jodhpur (India) for the power match. The team then advanced to the quarterfinals and successfully won the match with Wake Forest School of Law (USA). They made it to the semifinals and faced off with the Law Society of Ireland, the team who eventually won as Champion of the Competition. In addition to the moot court tournament, a talk was conducted by Dr. Bradnee Chambers, executive secretary of the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), regarding the mandate, jurisdiction, and developments in the CMS which gave the participants and students a clearer understanding of how the global legal society is intertwined in its efforts to seek environmental justice.

Ateneo has consistently qualified for the international rounds of the Stetson competition, winning First Runner-Up trophy for the Stetson international rounds in 2007. Last year, Ateneo and UP Law tied with one another in the regional championship, thus allowing Ateneo to advance to Florida, where Ateneo made it to the quarterfinals. P

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