POWELL, Wyo. - The Northwest College Forensics Team will give local audiences a front row seat to national-level performances when they preview their national tournament material at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 25, in Room 70 of the Fagerberg Building.
Five NWC team members will showcase the original and interpretive performances that earned them a ticket to the Phi Rho Pi National Tournament April 6-11 in Portland, Ore.
Ben Norberg and Danyon Satterlee, both Powell High School graduates, will perform their duo interpretation of relational issues between men and women. Norberg will add his individual dramatic interpretation, which won first place at the Western States Tournament. It deals with the problems of a man who has difficulty accepting a break-up. Danyon will also present her prose interpretation, another first place winner at the Western States Tournament.
Tiffani Kennedy of Townsend, Mont., will give a persuasive speech about the problems with waste disposal for pig farms. Pam Garman, also from Townsend, will offer an impromptu speech. Cali Christensen of Moroni, Utah, contributes an informative speech about Islamic banking.
In addition to their performance pieces, Kennedy and Garman will also talk about parliamentary and Lincoln-Douglas debate. It would be hard to find anybody more qualified - as a team, they're ranked in the top 10 percent in the nation by the National Parliamentary Tournament of Excellence.
The NPTE's requirements for national ranking eliminate some teams from even being ranked. Considering Garman and Kennedy are placed 108th out of 1,089 ranked teams, it's almost impossible to determine their overall ranking among all participating teams across the nation.
The NWC debate team will compete March 27-30 at the National Parliamentary Debate Association National Tournament (NPDA) in Stockton, Calif. The team as a whole is ranked second in the nation by the NPDA. That ranking is also better understood through a little explanation. Northwest has had to settle for second in national rankings for several years, right behind El Camino College in California.
Duane Fish, one of the NWC Forensics Team coaches, calls El Camino his nemesis. "We can and have outperformed them at the national tournament, but they beat us in the rankings every time. Because of their location, El Camino students have the luxury of traveling to many more tournaments during the season than we can. That boosts their chances of scoring qualifying rounds."
This year, Fish and his fellow coaches Jeannie Hunt and Fred Ebert can console themselves about those rankings by taking pride in Jared Bressler, a former NWC student. Bressler will be receiving an All-American Award at the National Parliamentary Debate Tournament. He got his start in collegiate forensics at Northwest from 2005-06. Hunt is taking extra pride since she was also his high school coach.