The Lex Caribbean Client Interviewing and Counselling competition is one of the official competitions endorsed by the Council of Legal Education for the three Caribbean Law Schools administered by the Council. The competition is patterned along the lines of the Louis M. Brown International Client Interviewing and Counselling competition. The regional law firm of Lex Caribbean had been the sponsor of the competition when it began.
The Eugene Dupuch Law School has been the winner of this regional competition on four (4) occasions. Three times under the coaching of Mr. Clive Guy and once under the coaching of Mrs. Cheryl Grant-Bethel, as she then was.
The students who represented the Eugene Dupuch Law School at the 2017 competition, were Aliki Skelton-Lettsome (BVI), McFalloughn Bowleg (Bhs) and Keva Louis (Bhs). Students of the law school were invited to apply for the competition and accompany their application with a short resume and an essay outlining their suitability for the competition. It is after that selection process that the team was chosen.
The training started in December of 2016 and continued into 2017. There were many weeks of work, during regular hours and for many hours after classes had ended, oftentimes going into the very late hours of the night. The team also trained hard on weekends including Sundays. Thankfully Principal Galanis was kind enough to offer the students some refreshments and a meal on the days of long training as we were often deep in work with little time to spare.
Naturally working in such close proximity and under such intense circumstances nerves became frayed, irritation sets in, and frustration made us all feel at our wits end. However, we never once felt like giving up or that we could not do it. Being strong soldiers and having agreed that we had only one task and that was to become the champions, we persevered. Soon we had bonded into a well-oiled machine, knowing each other’s limits. The speakers, Aliki and McFalloughn could, by this time, finish each other’s statements and the reserve Keva, kept them both in check oftentimes being the disciplinarian. Keva was an excellent reserve and worked really hard to ensure that we had all the authorities we needed. We used the law of Jamaica for the competition so that it meant that the students all had to learn the relevant laws of Jamaica for the competition.
We travelled to Kingston Jamaica and started work from the first night that we were there. We visited the Norman Manley Law School and met with our liaison personnel. We continued our hard work but also took time to have meals together and continue to bond and share thoughts as to our strategy for the competition.
On the day of the competition, January 27, 2017, needless to say, nerves and butterflies set in but the students were well trained, primed and ready to compete. I reassured them that they were fully prepared and that I was of the view that they would win once they executed as they had been trained to do.
The team went in as the final competitor and were magnificent in their performance. They executed excellently, each supporting the other. I confess that after they were done, we met and all agreed that there was so much more that we had in the tank to give.
When the judges started to read out the scores, team EDLS scored perfect points of 5 in two categories, 4 points in 8 categories and 3 in only one category, for a total of 45 points. The nearest team scored 38 points and the last team 31 points. No other team was in the 40s range as we were. True champions standing alone at the top.
We celebrated graciously and congratulated other competitors on their performances. We received our challenge shield and raised it high in victory. We celebrated at the hotel and later on at a cocktail reception attended by several members of the Council of Legal Education.
I wish to thank Principal Galanis, the Registrar, and of course all the students of EDLS, past and present, who supported us and sent us their prayers and well wishes. I personally wish to thank the students who gave so much of themselves and gave up study and family time in order for us to be successful.
The team dedicates this win to all the past and present students of the EDLSSA…THIS ONE IS FOR YOU GUYS!!!