March 5, 2013 at 3:40pm

For the sixth consecutive year, Millikin University students took top awards at the 35th annual Model Illinois Government (MIG) Simulation held Feb. 28 '€“ March 3 at the State Capital Complex in Springfield. Millikin students won first and second place awards in the Moot Court Competition and were recognized with individual awards.

Each spring semester, students from around the state of Illinois participate in the Model Illinois Government simulation. Nearly 300 students from over 20 colleges and universities participated in the 35th MIG Simulation. The Moot Court Competition featured 12 Millikin University student-attorney participants.

The Moot Court competition was held in the chambers that were once the home of the Illinois Supreme Court. Teams of attorneys argued before a panel of student justices and legal professionals and were scored on the basis of presentation and knowledge of the case fact. Millikin University provided six teams during the Moot Court Competition with five teams reaching the quarterfinal round. All teams that reached the semifinal and final rounds were from Millikin University. The team of James Farris, a junior from Decatur, and Jacqueline Hollis, a senior from Decatur, won the competition and was honored as Most Outstanding Moot Court Team. The team of Emma Prendergast, a junior from New Lenox, and Julia Hesse, a junior from Tinley Park, placed second and was honored as runner-up for Most Outstanding Moot Court Team.

"This is the sixth consecutive year that a Millikin team has been crowned champion," remarked Dr. Robert Money, chair of the philosophy department at Millikin University. "This is a remarkable record of success achieved by the hard work and outstanding performances of our students. The students who participate in Moot Court represent a diverse range of disciplines. This year, we had students with majors or minors in philosophy, history, English writing, finance, music, human services, political science, psychology, French, and dance."

In addition to Millikin's success, Millikin students swept the individual awards at the Moot Court Competition. Emma Prendergast was honored as Most Outstanding Moot Court Attorney, while Kolton Ray, a junior from Decatur, was honored as runner-up for Most Outstanding Moot Court Attorney.

"The Moot Court simulation has prepared me more for law school than any simple lecture or classroom experience could have," remarked Ray. "Moot Court has not only developed my skills as a future attorney, but has also put me in contact with numerous people in the field - from law school representatives to different practicing attorneys across the state. Throughout classroom analysis, discussion and evaluation, Dr. Money has made us a team and that's something that no other university is doing. When we win these competitions, we win together, and that camaraderie is what propels us to get better year after year."

"The students participating as attorneys this year were highly competitive, and so it's truly an honor to have been recognized in this way," remarked Prendergast. "Moot court is one of the most academically engaging and exciting opportunities offered at Millikin, and I'm thankful to be able to share this experience with such a remarkably talented group of peers."

Individuals that participated as justices in the competition were Millikin student Brittney DeRoo, a senior from Elgin, and Millikin Technical Support Specialist, Miles Grimes.

"Our students worked extremely hard in advance of and during the competition to produce and deliver sophisticated legal arguments," remarked Money. "The results speak for themselves. It is an honor to work with such bright and motivated students."

Other Millikin students who participated in the competition include Kevin Stocks, a senior from Bloomington; Joshua Rose, a junior from Saint Jacob; Rob Spurling, a sophomore from Taylorville; Greg Yep, a junior from Carol Stream; Nora Kocher, a junior from Oak Forest; Sam Spurling, a junior from Taylorville; and Brandy Hunt, a junior from Wapella.

For more information on Model Illinois Government, visit