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Speech and Debate students compete at Nationals

The+speech+and+debate+team+gets+ready+to+head+to+competition+from+their+hotel.+Nirmit+Chandan%2C+former+Bak+student%2C+said+it+was+an+%E2%80%9Cincredible+opportunity%E2%80%9D+to+learn+important+skills.+The+National+Speech+and+Debate+Tournament+was+held+on+June+18+to+23%2C+2017.
The speech and debate team gets ready to head to competition from their hotel. Nirmit Chandan, former Bak student, said it was an “incredible opportunity” to learn important skills. The National Speech and Debate Tournament was held on June 18 to 23, 2017.

The speech and debate team gets ready to head to competition from their hotel. Nirmit Chandan, former Bak student, said it was an “incredible opportunity” to learn important skills. The National Speech and Debate Tournament was held on June 18 to 23, 2017.

Alyssa Vaknin

Alyssa Vaknin

The speech and debate team gets ready to head to competition from their hotel. Nirmit Chandan, former Bak student, said it was an “incredible opportunity” to learn important skills. The National Speech and Debate Tournament was held on June 18 to 23, 2017.

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Over the past summer, 12 speech and debate students traveled to Birmingham, Alabama to compete in the annual national tournament.

“Every year the National Speech and Debate Association hosts a tournament. Students from around the country compete in speech, interpretation, and debate events,” Alyssa Vaknin, communications teacher, said.

Vaknin recommended going to nationals for other students because it was “a great learning experience.”

“Students have the opportunity to meet people from around the country while developing their skills in their competition events,” Vaknin said.

Lilliana Sisto, eighth grade communications major, went to nationals in order to enhance her skills in Public Forum.

“I believe I improved the most I have ever improved through the last three years of speech and debate,” Sisto said.

Sisto’s partner, eighth grade communications major Willow Hackett, thought it was an educating experience and went because she wanted to “prove to herself” that she could succeed.

“Last year I was a seventh grader and I wanted to do well in order to prove to my family and peers that I could be successful in in Public Forum,” Hackett said.

Former Bak students Nirmit Chandan and Katherine Oung made it to finals, with Chandan placing fifth in Congressional Debate and Oung placing fifth in both Original Oratory and Poetry.

“When I got fifth place I was ecstatic because I felt my hard work had truly paid off. I knew my parents were watching the livestream at home so that made me happy too,” Chandan said.

Chandan believed that nationals was an amazing opportunity.

Chandan said, “It is a life changing experience. You learn so much in competition. You have so much fun with your friends. You get used to the national circuit and meet new people along the way.”

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Speech and Debate students compete at Nationals