Forensics to compete at national tournament in June


Allison Hillebrand

The Hays High forensics team has been competing at NSDA for over 50 years. The national tournament will be held in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. in the middle of June.

Forensics and debate students have the opportunity to compete in the NSDA (National Speech and Debate Association), originally named National Forensics League.

“In the recent past, they changed from the NFL to not be confused with the National Football League,” instructor Codi Fenwick said. “It is a national circuit for competitive speech and debate.”

The organization helps connect, support, and promote speech and debate, Fenwick said.

Fenwick said any student who is willing to compete and puts in time may attend the event.

“It is a choice to go because it is $20 to even get involved and you have to be a member,” senior Amiyah Gonzalez said. “If you pay once, you are a member for life.”

A tournament approaching in April called the National Qualifier, which is specifically for NSDA, Fenwick said. The west Kansas district will compete.

“The winners of the different events will advance to a national tournament,” Fenwick said. “This year the tournament will be held in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. in the middle of June.”

Gonzalez said the competition at the national level is of a higher caliber.

“We get judged for how well we talk,” Gonzalez said. “It was very intimidating and at first, I was insecure about it.”

Senior Tana Herreman said she enjoyed forensics, being able to compete, and the bonding opportunities at the competitions.

“I have always strived to do everything I can in theater, because that is what I want to go in to,” Gonzalez said. “I saw this as a chance to expand my skills and gain feedback on what I need to fix and what I was doing well.”