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HeplerBroom’s Rebecca Nickelson Coaches Team to Second in the Nation at High School Mock Trial Championships

The mock trial team from MICDS (Mary Institute and Country Day School) won second in the nation at the recent National High School Mock Trial Championships. The event, held in Phoenix, Arizona, in May 2011, is an elite competition among the mock trial champions from 48 states and countries. The Missouri team from MICDS was coached by Rebecca Nickelson, partner at HeplerBroom, and several teachers from MICDS.

"It was a real honor to coach the students from MICDS. I have known several of them since they were freshmen. Now, seeing them as graduating seniors, they have grown so much and mock trial has given them so much confidence," says Nickelson. The team competing at nationals from MICDS included: seniors Caroline Rouse, Aash Chalasani, Vivek Biswas, and Will Johnston; juniors Teddy Murphy, Corthay Schock, and Ali Dalton; and sophomore Christina Rouse. The teachers from MICDS who also coached the team are Chris Rhodes, Mark Autry and Karen Wildman.

The team was judged on how well the members knew the law, proved the elements of the case, presented the story, and organized their questions. In a six to three decision, the team from the State of Indiana was awarded first place at the national competition.
Nickelson has coached the mock trial team from MICDS since 2000. During that time, the team won five Missouri state championships and went on to represent Missouri at the national championships each time. "Many years of hard work has paid off as the team has continued to get better and better at the national competition. The students have set high goals for themselves. As a coach, I end up learning a lot from the students and other coaches. Their drive pushes me to be a better coach and attorney," says Nickelson. Other teachers from MICDS who have coached the team in past years are Michael Skinner and Brian Johannes.