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The state’s newest court is taking their work on the road this week.
The Intermediate Court of Appeals of West Virginia (ICA) will hear three arguments at Concord University this Thursday, Sept. 21 as part of a new judicial educational initiative called ICA On-Campus.
The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals regularly hears arguments at West Virginia University and Marshall University, including a tradition of visiting Marshall every few years in mid-September to honor the anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution on Sept. 17, 1787.
Intermediate Court of Appeals Chief Justice Dan Greear said his court wanted to do something similar but include the state’s other four year institutions.
“We just wanted to share that experience and broaden the students that we can reach with that,” he said. “Students at Shepherd or West Virginia State or Concord or Bluefield State, or wherever, ought to have the same kinds of opportunities if we can do it. We just thought it’d be a much better use of resources to kind of expand the universe of students who are able to see that versus just repeating the same old thing to the same old students.”
Greear said the ICA will host one on-campus argument day during each term of court moving forward – once in the fall and again in the spring. The Chief Justice of the court chooses the venue for each term.
“I got the first pick, and my son graduated from Concord last spring, so that’s why I chose Concord,” Greear said. “Judge (Thomas) Scarr will be chief beginning in January, so it’ll be up to him to choose where we’re gonna go in the spring and fall next term.”
The court invites students to witness the branch of government and observe what happens.
“Hopefully, the prelaw students or students in other majors that relate to the law that might be interested in that will get to come out and see firsthand what happens,” Greear said.
After each argument at Thursday’s hearing, the ICA’s three judges will step aside so students and the public can have a short question and answer session with the attorneys about the cases they argued. After the argument docket is over, the judges will be available informally to answer questions about the judiciary.