HPU students advance at Texas Intercollegiate Forensics Association tournament

BROWNWOOD – February 20, 2019 – Howard Payne University’s Student Speaker Bureau speech and debate team recently competed at the Texas Intercollegiate Forensics Association (TIFA) Spring Championship tournament, held at Texas State University in San Marcos. Lucy Manning and Tyler Olin advanced to quarterfinals in parliamentary debate (NPDA).

Additionally, Olin, senior social science jurisprudence and Guy D. Newman Honors Academy major from Howe, earned the fourth place top NPDA speaker and was named to the prestigious Texas All-State Forensics Squad. The squad is a recognition given to students who have excelled in forensics at the two-year or four-year level while maintaining high levels of academic achievement and who exhibit strong character and leadership skills.

Manning, sophomore communication, social science jurisprudence and Guy D. Newman Honors Academy major from Fort Worth, earned the sixth place top NPDA speaker. Together, the team claimed two of the top six recognized speakers at the tournament.

Dr. Julie Welker, professor of communication and chair of the Department of Communication, coaches the team.

“It is difficult to express how competitive this tournament is — our students consistently rank high and beat some of the largest state universities in Texas,” said Dr. Welker. “Tyler and Lucy were 5-0 in prelims and headed into quarterfinals the top-ranked team.”

HPU competed against 34 debate teams from 17 colleges and universities from Texas. HPU was one of two small, private, Division III universities competing and the only private Baptist university to advance in debate.

Other students who competed at the tournament were Madison Neal, junior communication major from Chandler, and Alek Mendoza, freshman theatre major from Bangs. Richelle Hair, instructor of communication, assisted the team.

The HPU speech and debate team will travel to Salina, Kansas, in March to compete in the National Christian College Forensics Association national tournament.

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Cutline: Lucy Manning and Tyler Olin, members of HPU’s Student Speaker Bureau speech and debate team, received speaking awards at the Texas Intercollegiate Forensics Association Spring Championship tournament.