NE State debaters capture second and third place team awards

Northeast State debaters recently scored second and third place team finishes at the Smoky Mountain Debate Tournament at Walters State Community College. The College competed against 17 teams, including those from Berea College (KY), Walters State, and Tennessee Tech University.

Victoria Hewlett, Joseph Hicks, Paul Taylor, and Jess Webb represented Northeast State. Hewlett paired with Taylor, while Hicks teamed with Webb. In addition, Dr. Ruth Livingston, a Northeast State associate professor of Speech, helped the teams prepare their cases and judged at the tournament.

The format for the event was two-person parliamentary debate using National Parliamentary Debate Association rules. Basically, teams study each round’s topic for 20 minutes and then develop a case with one team in support and the other in opposition.

Northeast State debaters (from left) Paul Taylor, Victoria Hewlett, Jess Webb, and Joseph Hicks.
Northeast State debaters (from left) Paul Taylor, Victoria Hewlett, Jess Webb, and Joseph Hicks.

Hicks and Webb earned a berth in the final round, but lost a two-to-one decision, earning second place. Hewlett and Taylor landed the third place team award.

Debaters also had an opportunity to earn individual awards along with team awards. For the first time, all Northeast State speakers attending a tournament earned an individual award. Webb was competing in her first tournament and earned the third place in the first-time speaker category. Hicks received the sixth place novice speaker category. Hewlett and Taylor took home fifth and seventh place speaker awards, respectively. In all, 35 speakers participated in the event.

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