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8th Circuit Holds Arguments at Drake Law School

Thursday, November 2nd, 2023

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit heard oral arguments in the Daniel J. Power Courtroom at Drake University Law School on Oct. 26, giving students, faculty, and members of the community a chance to see the court in action.

The Eighth Circuit provides appellate review of federal cases within its jurisdiction which includes Iowa and six other Midwest states. The panel of three judges, James B. Loken of Minneapolis, Jane Kelly of Cedar Rapids, and Senior Judge Michael Melloy of Cedar Rapids, heard three cases. Learn more about the cases here.

Drake Law School was one of the few law schools to host 8th Circuit arguments this year. Associate Dean John Edwards was instrumental in arranging the opportunity. He highlighted the educational value of the experience saying, “This was an amazing experience for our students and one they continue to discuss. The arguments became very real for them as the judges questioned counsel, and students readily recognized the impact of the skills we teach, especially thorough research, analysis, and preparation.”   

Karrecia Crawley

Karrecia Crawley, a first-year student and winner of the Law School’s C. Edwin Moore Oral Advocacy Competition, shared her excitement about the opportunity to witness the proceedings. “It was fascinating to watch the 8th Circuit hearings,” she said. “As someone thinking about litigating for civil rights, observing the case regarding someone’s civil rights gave me a glimpse of what being an attorney would look like in practice. Overall, it made me more interested in litigation!” Drake Law Dean Jerry Anderson summed up the significance of the event: “There is no better way to learn oral advocacy than watching lawyers argue real cases in front of real judges. By listening to the judges’ questions, students can also discover how judicial reasoning works and how to craft a persuasive argument.”

For more news, visit the Drake Law News Archive.

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