Forensics students taking home medals

Willow Vaughn, Reporter

Members of the forensics team have been competing in meets since early February and have earned some medals.

The forensics team had a meet at Lawrence High on Feb. 2-3 where Peyton Fair, freshman, and Griffin Minter, sophomore, took first and second, respectively, in Novice Informative Speaking. Dylan Hood, sophomore, took fifth in Novice Dramatic Interpretation and Cooper Dammrich, senior, took fourth in Dramatic Interpretation.

Their next meet was at Shawnee Mission North on Feb. 17, which had Minter taking sixth in Lincoln Douglas Debate, which is “debate over philosophy and morality,” as explained by Kristen White, forensics coach. This year, forensics students are “[debating] the value of free speech versus speech codes on college campuses,” according to White.

Micah Leckliter, sophomore, took fifth in Student Congress where students compete by giving speeches about mock legislation in a chamber with other students.

The meet on Feb. 18 at Shawnee Mission South had Kylie Flynn, junior, taking fourth in Dramatic Interpretation and Prose. Leckliter placed again in this meet, coming in fifth in Prose.

The state forensics competition takes place in May, and to qualify students must take first or second place at an invitational competition. Separate tournaments are held in March and April for students to try to qualify for the National Speech and Debate Association Tournament that is held in the summer.

All novice events are limited to students who are in their first year on the the team, but these are very uncommon. More often than not, events are open for students of all levels to compete in.

Students that participate in forensics gain “research and critical thinking skills,” along with “the ability to learn from honest criticism” as well as acting abilities, White said. She also stated that students can learn to be self-motivated, take on roles as a leader, and, of course, be more comfortable, efficient and productive when speaking in front of large audiences of people.