September 18, 2019
On Thursday, September 5, 2019, ahead of the official start to the 2019 Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF) Mock Trial Program, the AGBU Manoukian High School (MHS) Mock Trial team paid a visit to Honorable Judge Amy Ashvanian’s chambers in Downtown, Los Angeles. Accompanying the team was the new mock trial coach, attorney Ani Papirian, and teacher Anoush Markarian. Judge Ashvanian, who served as the AGBU MHS mock trial coach in 2018 prior to becoming an appointed Supreme Court judge, welcomed the students with open arms and spoke to them about the magnitude of this mock trial program and what they should expect from the competition.
The Mock Trial Program was started at AGBU MHS back in 2017 when the Armenian Bar Association (ABA) and AGBU Western District collaborated to implement the program at AGBU MHS as part of an ABA initiative. The ABA has supported the program since its launch and the program has gained a lot of student interest and participation. In 2018, the AGBU MHS mock trial team ranked 40th place out of 130 participating schools.
“The most enjoyable part of being a Mock Trial coach is seeing the progress of the students and witnessing their accomplishments in an arena that most adults cannot master,” expressed Papirian. Papirian who has served as a mock trial program coach for other teams over the years is an AGBU alumna from the AGBU Alex Manougian School in Montreal, Canada.