Professor William Murphy Places First at Master Teacher Competition

Five faculty members holding awards they recieved
April 8, 2019

Professor William Murphy, Assistant Professor, Division of Criminal Justice, Legal Studies and Homeland Security received First Place Recognition in the Master Teacher Competition at the 2019 MBAA International Conference for his innovative and creative teaching exercise known as Legal Shark Tank.

The Master Teacher Competition, a perennial highlight of the MBAA International Conference, solicits paper submissions focused on the development of successful, novel, research-based, and outcome-driven learning activities. After review of the submissions by a conference committee comprised of faculty from across the country, four finalists are selected and invited to present their programs during a special session at the conference where attendees vote to award First Place honors. Other finalists this year included Profs. Todd Haugh and April Sellers of Indiana University and Nancy J. White of Central Michigan University.

Adapting Kolb’s Theory of Experiential Learning to enhance students’ Career Readiness Competencies, Prof. Murphy’s Legal Shark Tank simulates a model of the popular television series Shark Tank, where teams of legal research students pitch real world attorney “sharks” a potential case for representation at their respective law firms. After hearing each team’s pitch, the individual sharks decide to either decline or accept the representation by asking questions about the legal issues and relevant facts of each case and challenging students to think critically and support their presentations with precedent, legal analysis, and litigation strategy researched throughout the semester.

The last Legal Shark Tank occurred in December 2018, where attorneys from Lewis Johs Avallone Aviles, LLP, Quatela Chimeri PLLC and the Queens County District Attorney’s Office serves as our Sharks and worked with our very own Legal Studies students.

Congratulations, Professor Murphy for this outstanding achievement.