CANYON, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Officials with 1910PR announced that all four West Texas A&M University Forensics Team members have qualified individually for the American Forensic Association National Speech Tournament in April.

According to a 1910PR press release, Alejandro Mata and Isaac Doty qualified after earning several points in various tournaments that happened between September and March. Abigail Stilwell and Hannah Kamer recently qualified after placing in the top three during the district tournament.

(Photo of WTAMU Forensics team members via West Texas A&M website) Abigail Stilwell, from left, Alejandro Mata, Hannah Kamer, and Isaac Doty.

The release details that students qualified to compete in the following events:

  • Mata, a senior studying political science from Herford, Texas will compete in four events including “extemporaneous”, “impromptu”, “prose”, and “communication analysis”.
  • Doty, a junior from Lubbock, Texas studying sociology qualifies to compete in the following events “extemporaneous”, “informative”, “persuasion”, and “communication analysis.”
  • Stilwell, a junior studying psychology from Wichita Falls, Texas qualified to compete in “after-dinner speaking.”
  • Kamer, a sophomore also studying psychology from Sweetwater, Texas will be competing in “prose” after qualifying.

“I think it proves that in an activity where divisions don’t matter, even at smaller schools like WT, individuals can compete with the biggest schools out there and on their level,” said Dr. Kelsey Abele, assistant professor of communication studies and forensics team coach. “They deserve to be acknowledged for the amount of research they do on a weekly basis and how much intellectual acuity it takes to be competitive at public speaking—the thing that most folks fear more than death.”

Officials stated that the national tournament will take place from April 1 through April 3 in Santa Ana, Calif.

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