Speech & Debate Team

Speech & Debate Team

Team members, Teressa Boone, Ally Nagel, Fernando Chivela, and Nomfanelo Hlophe, hold up their trophies with assistant coach, Dr. John Edwards.

Team members, Teressa Boone, Ally Nagel, Fernando Chivela, and Nomfanelo
Hlophe, hold up their trophies with assistant coach, Dr. John Edwards.

 

The mission of the Speech and Debate team at Methodist University is to prepare leaders for success in careers in all areas through participation in competitive intercollegiate speech and debate events. There are many benefits to joining the Speech and Debate team at Methodist University. Here are a few:

1. Learn presentation skills

Through Methodist University Speech and Debate, participants will learn advanced public speaking skills applicable to any chosen profession. Speech and Debate helps increase your self-confidence while communicating an important message.

2. Network with peers

Make valuable friendships with fellow MU students while networking with other students across the state and country.  MU Speech and Debate students are from all majors, representing a diverse cross section of the student population.

3. Be a leader

Inspire local high school students to continue their study of communication and spark passion in public speaking.  Attend high school tournaments as a judge or mentor.  Teach invaluable debate and speaking skills at a summer camp for young speakers.

4. Earn class credit

OCL 2200/3200/4200 Intercollegiate Debate class has openings every semester.  Schedule one class period per week to meet with Coach Brenda Mitchell to prepare events for scheduled competition.

5. Get published

Competitors selected to represent North Carolina at the Interstate Oratorical Association Tournament in the spring will have their speeches published in Winning Orations.

As you can see, there are many benefits to joining Speech and Debate.  Please contact Brenda Mitchell at brmitchell@methodist.edu if you have any further questions.

Team member, Fernando Chivela, competed at the Interstate Oratory Competition in Monmouth, IL April 27th-29th, 2018.

Team member, Fernando Chivela, competed at the Interstate Oratory Competition
in Monmouth, IL April 27th-29th, 2018.

History

Methodist University debate began in 1991 with students who wanted to debate at the collegiate level. After a year, and the fortunate coincidence of hiring a determined and dedicated debate coach in John Humphreys, the school put time and money into building the program. Notable team successes include winning the American Debate Association novice national championship in 1996 and 1998, and a second place finish in the junior varsity division of the American Debate Association national championship in 1999. Methodist University hosted the American Debate Association's national tournament in 2002. In 2005, the program moved from the Division of Student Affairs to the Division of Academics where it was housed in the Department of Organizational Communication & Leadership-Mass Communications. William “Greg” Thomas, a graduate of MU and a member of the 1996 and 1998 ADA national championship teams, was hired as the coach. Under his guidance and working with the leadership at Fayetteville State University, the team competed in the Frederick-Douglas Debate Duals. Individual events/Speech competition was added to the debate program when Coach Brandon Miller took over the team in 2008. During Miller’s six years there were many students who competed in speech events. In 2015, Brenda Mitchell became the Director of Speech and Debate. Under her coaching, student have won many awards and competed in the national Interstate Oratorical Tournament.

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