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Stop Mocking Me!

Nadine talks about her experiences on Carleton’s Mock Trial during her first two years at college.

Nadine talks about her experiences on Carleton’s Mock Trial during her first two years at college.

Previous Experience

Hey friends, Mock Trial was one of the first clubs I joined upon arriving at Carleton. While I hadn’t participated in high school, I was part of my middle school’s team. Although that was a fun experience, it was definitely nothing like collegiate mock trial.


I was nervous about trying out at first, but thanks to a bit of encouragement from my freshman roomie, I decided to give it a shot. 

I remember I had to memorize a monologue for the audition. You could choose between a monologue by Jeff Winger from the sitcom Community or the hit show Game of Thrones. After much deliberation, I settled on Winger’s monologue. 

The Try-Out

Although I was nervous when I walked into the room, the team captains quickly put me at ease. They were super friendly and really nice.

Following introductions, they asked me to recite the monologue I had prepared. Although it was not necessary to memorize it, I had, in hopes of giving myself a better shot.

After that, they asked me to pick a random topic to argue in favor of.

I quickly searched my brain for anything I could easily defend. Being a native Minnesotan, I decided to argue that the state of Minnesota was severely underrated.

I talked about the many Fortune 500 companies that called Minnesota home. I mentioned the number of lakes we have. I also brought up the “Minnesota nice” phenomenon.

After about a minute or so, the captains asked me to argue against my initial point. Following the prompt, I talked at length about the brutal Minnesotan winters. I talked about the achievement gap and the fact we have way too many mosquitoes. Once I finished, they thanked me for auditioning and told me they would let me know if I had made the team by the end of the week.

Although it was a quick turnaround, I couldn’t wait for them to reach a verdict,

A few days later I got an email! I made the team!

Mock Trial
The photo depicts Carleton Mock posing for a photo at St. Olaf after a tournament.


Typically, Mock Trial has two separate teams, each with 10 team members. Usually, the teams during the fall term are a mix of returners and new students. Moving into winter, the teams are switched up. Sometimes we stack teams. In other years, the new teams are just a different combination of newbies and more experienced students.

While I was thrilled to be on the team, I knew it was going to be a time commitment. Mock Trial has practices 3 times a week, each about 2 hours long. Two of the practices are only with the smaller ten-person teams, while on Sunday evening, both teams meet.

During fall term, we spend most of our time learning about mock trials. We go over objections and start on case theory. We’ll have team scrimmages a couple of times a term. Sometimes we’ll even have scrimmages with St. Olaf just to prepare for winter term. The winter term is when we actually start competing. While tournaments are fun, prepare to give up most of your weekends for the next couple of months. 

Because of COVID, unfortunately, the majority of our tournaments were online last year, which at times was a bummer. However, often it was pretty convenient because we didn’t have to spend hours on a bus traveling.

Overall, while Mock Trial is quite a big time commitment, it can be a ton of fun, rewarding, and a great way to make new friends.

Mock Trial
The photo depicts one of the Mock Trial smiling after a successful round.

Nadine (she/her) is a rising Junior from Spring Lake Park, MN. She is majoring in Political Science and minoring in Educational Studies and Spanish. During the school year, she works at Carleton as a Resident Assistant. On campus, she is involved in Carleton’s Student Government and several Carleton comedy groups, including Queens of Comedy and Lenny Dee. When she is not practicing some of her new material, Nadine enjoys reading, cooking, and traveling. This fall, Nadine plans to be in Spain on Carleton’s Madrid Program. Meet the other bloggers!