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Furman to host 2016 Mock Trial national championship

Last updated December 15, 2014

By Tina Underwood

mock-trial-smallFurman University has been selected as the host site for the American Mock Trial Association (AMTA) National Championship tournament that will take place in April 2016.

The event, which features the top college mock trial teams vying for a national championship, will mark the first time Furman will have hosted AMTA’s premier event.

Under the direction of Furman political science professor and AMTA past-president Dr. Glen Halva-Neubauer, Furman’s mock trial program has been a longtime supporter of regional and super regional mock trial tournaments.

Halva-Neubauer attributes the selection of Furman as the venue for the national championship to the university’s excellent performance as host of tournaments leading up to the crowning contest. Last season, Furman drew the highest tournament evaluations for its Ney National among all 33 AMTA tournaments, including the National Championship held in Orlando.

The regular AMTA season officially begins in February when 630 teams nationwide enter regional competitions at 25 sites. The top seven or eight teams from those tournaments advance to one of eight super regional contests, one of which is the Furman-hosted Ney National (now known as the Bell Tower Tournament), which is typically held in March. Forty-eight team finalists representing approximately 500 students move from the super regional tournaments to the AMTA National Championship Finals.

Furman hosted its first regional AMTA tournament in 1998, producing an unprecedented number of judges. The university has hosted a super regional since 2009.

“Our commitment to fielding quality judging panels has been our signature,” says Halva-Neubauer. “We also do things here you rarely see in other places—receptions for students, free lunches, T-shirts, golf cart transportation—but at the end of the day, we have really great facilities and judges.”

Furman’s mock trial program has won a bid to the national championship tournament for 18 consecutive years. Teams are now competing at invitational tournaments to prepare for a bid to the 2015 championship finals. A bid in 2016 would mark Furman’s 20th straight invitation—this time on the university’s home turf.

For more information, visit the Mock Trial homepage or contact Glen Halva-Neubauer at (864) 294-3608 or

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