Butler University’s speech team has been counting its successes in recent forensics tournaments and competitions. Last Saturday, the team participated in the state competition, with several events to follow.
The state competition was held at Ball State University and included eight schools from across Indiana. Butler’s team consisted of six students.
Junior Matt Miller took third place in extemporaneous speaking and sophomore a sophomore biology, chemistry and Spanish major Kelsey Coy took sixth place in rhetorical criticism.
This year’s team of 10 consists of a variety of students from different backgrounds and majors, and gives the students a chance to participate in various kinds of speech techniques.
“Pretty much every college is represented on the speech team,” Janice Crawford the 12-year Butler of Forensics said.
The team consists of a diverse set of biology, political science, communications, business and pharmacy majors, just to name a few.
“The great thing about speech team is that it is a great thing for people of any major to participate in. Andrew Wray, a sophomore communication studies, political science and history major said. From business majors to performance majors, regardless of what you want to do with your life, interpersonal communications is key and the Butler Speech team is a great way to develop that skill,”
Wray participates in extemporaneous speaking, after dinner speaking, parliamentary debate and public forum debate. He said his experience has improved his communication skills.
“I really enjoy the friends I’ve made, both on the Butler speech team and from other teams in the Midwest,” Wray said.
“My favorite things are the camaraderie between team members as well as the work we do,” Coy said.
She participates in rhetorical criticism, impromptu, editorial impromptu, extemporaneous speaking and duo interpretation.
Crawford said that the speech team offers three different genres which students participate in, depending on their interest. These include platform, limited prep or impromptu and oral interpretation, which is related to prose, poetry and drama.
The team prepares for its competitions by holding weekly meetings with Crawford. This includes practicing their material and conducting peer coaching sessions.
“We work both individually and as a team,” Crawford said. “They usually meet with me at least a couple hours every week. I work with them on an individual basis about once a week.”
“Janis Crawford, our coach, takes a very real interest in making sure that not only we as participants do well, but that we learn and have fun doing it,” Wray said.
Crawford said the team normally participates in about six competitions per semester. In order to qualify for nationals, the team had to qualify through another tournament earlier in the year.
The team plans to send teams of four students each to the Novice National at the University of Indianapolis and the National Forensics Association Tournament at Illinois State University.