M&S’ senior law partner, Lee S. Michaels, is not only a top New York personal injury lawyer, but also an award winning adjunct professor at Syracuse College of Law. He teaches young soon-to-be lawyers how to try a court case. This is called “trial practice” in law school. The Syracuse College of Law website recently featured an article about Lee’s amazing trial teaching techniques.
Lee’s trial teaching philosophy is simple: The best way to learn to try a case is – well – to try a case. So his students all have to try one to get their final grade. It’s just a simulated trial, sure, but a very realistic one nevertheless. The students take on roles such as prosecutor, criminal defense lawyer, and witnesses in a fictitious criminal trial.
Lee tries to make the simulated trial as realistic as possible, “with a little help from his friends”. He calls on former students – now judges – to act as trial judges. Lee’s class’ most recent “trials” starred Auburn NY’s City Judge David Thurston and US Northern District Magistrate Judge Thérèse Dancks, both former students of Lee’s. Also participating were Auburn City Judge Michael McKeon and Lee’s former student Kevin Kuehner, a Syracuse trial lawyer