Speech and Debate at Whitworth University
Whitworth Forensics is an interdisciplinary program that provides a rigorous intellectual experience for students interested in the exchange of ideas and in sharpening their public speaking skills. Forensics is open to all students regardless of academic major or previous public-speaking experience.
The Whitworth Forensics Team competes in intercollegiate tournaments in the Northwest Forensics Conference and in speech and debate tournaments nationwide. Team members test their skills against some of the finest speakers in the U.S. and consistently earn regional and national recognition.
The forensics program covers the costs of tournament entry fees, supplies, travel, meals and lodging, while students contribute the time, effort, enthusiasm and commitment to excellence necessary to prepare for and compete in tournaments. Students also take a one-credit course, Applied Speech: Forensics.
2018-19 Whitworth Forensics Highlights
- National Champions: For the sixth time in seven years, Whitworth took first place at the National Christian College Forensics Association's national tournament. Tucker Wilson '20 won the national championship in after-dinner speaking for the second consecutive year. Solenne de Tassigny '22 took first place and Jericho Simone '22 took second place in the junior varsity debate division, while Kelea Ilac '22 took first place and Chauncella Koulibali '22 earned second place in the novice division.
- Great Speakers and Debaters in the Northwest: Four Pirates won the Linfield College tournament in the novice division of debate. Justin Li '21 took first place, and AhLana Ames '22 took second. Eli Min '22 and Kelea Ilac '22 were semifinalists.
- Debating the Irish: In April, Whitworth hosted the Irish national champions in a public exhibition debate. In this contest with our Irish visitors, Whitworth's Forensics team argued for the resolution, "Populism is the greatest threat to liberty."