APU’s Forensics Team Qualify for Nationals

by Nina Karim
The Azusa Pacific forensics team prepared for the annual speech and debate nationals and participated in a lively debate and literature performances during a Night of Forensics on Wednesday, March 11, in Wilden Lecture Hall.
The National Christian Colleges Forensics Tournament took place on March 14 at Biola University, and several APU students performed their way to national titles. Rachelle DeYoung was named National Champion in both Prose Interpretation and Programmed Oral Interpretation, and also placed fourth in the nation for Dramatic Interpretation. Tyler Endres was named National Champion for Poetry Interpretation, placed second in both Prose Interpretation and Programmed Oral Interpretation, as well as placing third in Individual Sweepstakes for excellence across multiple types of speaking events. For these accomplishments, APU received a first place sweepstakes in the Limited Entry division of the competition.
Additionally, Leanne Ronk was recognized as the sixth best debate speaker in the nation, while Jake Beiswenger competed his way to elimination rounds in the Lincoln-Douglas Debate.
According to their coaches, APU's forensics students worked extremely hard to achieve this level of dedication and success. Winning several sweepstakes awards and qualifying for three national tournaments, each with different entry requirements, demonstrates the team’s excellence in both individual and debate events.
Students may participate in both individual and debate events or one or the other. APU, the defending National Christian College Champions, has a remarkable reputation in both events and always performs at the highest levels. 
According to Amy Jung, director of the forensics program, “The best thing about our forensics team is not the relationships we build, though those are great; not the awards we win, though those are shiny; the best thing about our team is that the students engage their minds and their faith in tackling some of the biggest questions facing our nation today.”
The national tournament generated excitement and anticipation as APU’s placed bid to host the tournament in 2011 was accepted by NCCFA members. In previous years when APU has hosted the tournament, the team has done very well, ranking first and second, showing a strong history performing at home.
The forensics program continues to prove to be an incredible experience for university students. It enriches minds and enables them to improve their debate and speech skills while learning about important issues in society.