Forensics members faced difficulties during the two-day speech and debate tournament at Taejon Christian International School (TCIS) from Oct. 17-18. As a result of speaking for hours and coping with the lengthy commute time between TCIS and SIS, participants were tired after their respective tournaments. Despite this, SIS tied for first overall along with Korea International School.
Members in the speech portion missed their Friday fourth period classes and part of their third period classes to depart for TCIS. However, even after missing nearly half of the school day, they returned to SIS past midnight. Some of the speech participants were also debaters, meaning they had to arrive at school by 6:30 a.m. the following day.
“Thankfully, there weren’t many traffic problems while we were commuting,” said Gina Lee (11), prose and poetry mentor. “However, the distance was still too far, and we didn’t hold the awards ceremony in the end because people needed time to get home. Many people did not want to go to TCIS in the first place due to the great distance, and this just made that disinclination stronger.”
According to Gina, the events were also disorganized and delayed due to improperly assigned rooms and coding errors. The extemporaneous speech finals were canceled due to lack of time, and the winners were determined through preliminary rankings.
“I think that TCIS had a lot of new teachers hosting the tournament,” said Michelle Ganus, parliamentary debate coach. “Anytime someone is hosting something for the first time, they face problems and issues. But the good thing is that [other coaches] are all there to help, and I think it was a great learning experience for TCIS in preparation of tournaments that they will host in the future.”
Despite such problems, the team still won various awards. Juniors Daniel Choi and Matthew Kang placed first and second respectively in extemporaneous speech while juniors Angela Yoon and Heejin Hong tied for second place in impromptu speech. In the debate tournament, Heejin and Lauren Ahn (11) won first place in parliamentary debate, followed by Angela and Daniel, who placed second. Freshmen Seehyun Park and Diana Lee placed fourth in the parliamentary section, while Jiwhan Moon (10) and Nuri Choi (9) placed first in public forum debate. Sophomores Rachel Kang and Juhyung Park placed third and fourth respectively in Lincoln-Douglas debate. Currently, members are preparing for their next tournament to be held from Nov. 21-22 at Gyeonggi-Suwon International School.
“The tournament served as a great learning experience for me both as a debater and as a teammate,” Jiwhan said. “Now that the tournament is over, I would like to not only help future public forum debaters attain good results, but also try out as a Lincoln-Douglas participant in the near future.”
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