And the winner this year is....Sabah Tshung Tsin Secondary School of Malaysia!
It may seem like an ordinary international competition win to some but to those in the know, this victory almost didn't happen. First of all, the level of competition was pretty high, with the STTSS students having to beat other equally-hungry schools in Sabah. Out of 105 teams all over the world, STSS was among the handful that made it to the finals. Second, there was an advisory issued by the Ministry of Education, barring all student travel out of Malaysia due to the H1N1 flu epidemic. Teachers and parents had to kick up a blizzard of letters and phone calls before permission was granted.
For the team to win, after all the stress and shocks they suffered, it must be pure ecstasy.
To Averyl Bachi, Annabelle Yap Yang Ling and Jonathan Lee Yung Sheng, this will be something they will never forget :)
I asked Averyl to tell me about the competition and this is what she wrote :
In this competition, the organizer will give your school a case to read and a stack of related cases for you to back up your argument. They will decide whether you're the appellant or the respondent, and they will give you 2 or 3 grounds to fight on. A lawyer's help is really needed, because reading the related case is really confusing. Teachers can help to explain the English and lawyers can help with the arguments.
The regional round is in Kota Kinabalu, competing with around 15 schools. The winner will go to Australia to compete with the Australian schools.
The organizer in KK is A.C. Services (Mr. Anthony Lim).
At first it was kind of difficult, because when you read the cases and you don’t get any of it, you'll panic. It was like Greek to me at first. So you need to read it a few times. Knowing the facts of the case is important too, because in the middle of presenting your argument, the judges will cut in and ask questions, such as "Why do you think it can’t be done this way?" or "Why is he wrong?"
So it's important to anticipate what questions they're going to ask and have the answers ready. That was the hard part, not knowing how to answer the questions and thinking on your feet.
The best part was ... WINNING! and thinking "All that hard work finally paid off!"
The second best thing was the prizes! For the regionals, they gave the team RM1500 and for finals, AUS300! Annabelle Yap won Best Advocate and her prize is a 40% scholarship to study law in Bond University.
For those who would like to know more about this competition, here's the link.