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Five members of the Lafayette Forensics Society are preparing to compete in the National Forensics Association’s (NFA) 18th annual Novice National Individual Events Tournament, March 24-26 at DelMar College, Corpus Christi, Texas.

The contingent includes first-year students Brandt Siegel (Marysville, Ohio), Emily Murphy (Center Valley, Pa.), Alison Hindenlang (Randolph, N.J.), and Kenya Flash (Coopersburg, Pa.), and sophomore Geoffrey Gresh (Lowell, Mass.).

The forensics society has forged a record of success since it was formed last February, says Bruce Allen Murphy, director of forensics and Fred Morgan Kirby Professor of Civil Rights.

“The team has built steadily toward a competitive showing at the 2000 Novice Nationals and has achieved remarkable success in qualifying people for the NFA nationals in just over a year of competition,” Murphy says.

“As members continue developing additional events we’ll have more people participating in multiple events in all of our competitions. We’re still a young team, but in time we will be a powerful one,” continues Murply, adding that the team welcomes newcomers regardless of their experience level.

In the team’s most recent competition, a tournament at Carroll County (Md.) Community College February 26-27, Lafayette placed sixth overall. Siegel led the way with high finishes in four individual events. He placed second in both extemporaneous speaking and in informative speaking, was third in persuasive speaking, and finished sixth in impromptu speaking. He has qualified to participate in all of these events, plus the Lincoln-Douglas debate, at the NFA national tournament April 13-17 at Ohio University.

Siegel also participated individually in an important pre-nationals competition known as a “generic tournament” March 4 at Ohio State University, which included students from more than 50 other colleges and universities. He placed first in impromptu speaking in the novice division.

“Brandt’s progress in impromptu speaking is remarkable,” Murphy says. “He began with no experience in the event and now is routinely placing high. It just shows what hard work and dedication over a long period of time can accomplish.”

At Carroll County, Gresh was third in extemporaneous speaking, qualifying for the NFA nationals in that event. He also sixth in impromptu speaking, an event in which he had already qualified for the NFA nationals at the Pennsylvania State Individual Events Association tournament Feb. 18 and 19.

Murphy received the Outstanding Novice Award at the Carroll County tournnament.

“Emily’s well-rounded success bodes well for the future,” Bruce Murphy says.

Hindenlang qualified for the NFA nationals in poetry, one of the dramatic events. Dramatic events are interpretations of prose (fiction or non-fiction) or poetry pieces, performed by individuals or pairs (the latter called “dramatic duo”).

Categorized in: Academic News