State Qualifications

Eliana Quiocho, Reporter

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Four Clovis High Speech and Debate students have qualified for the State Competition which will take place April 28 through April 30 at Arcadia High School.

Among the students who placed and qualified for the State Competition were junior Alexa Van hooser, fifth in Impromptu; junior Ashley Bermudez, sixth in Original Advocacy; junior Annie Butchert, second in original oratory; and sophomore Lily Hammerstrom, second in Humorous Interpretation.

The Speech and Debate team competed at State Qualifications – a tournament composed of different speech events that determines which students will make it to the 2017 State Competition – on February 25. The event was held in Bakersfield, California at Independence High School.

Throughout the school year, the Speech and Debate team works hard to strive for the State Qualifications. State Qualifications and the State Competition are two of the most important events of the year for the team, and it is a big deal to U.S. History teacher and Speech and Debate coach Katie Wayne that her students placed.

“I am unspeakably happy,” said Wayne. “I am looking forward to representing Clovis High School, because it is not every year that we place at State.”

Additionally, there is a lot of tough competition at these events, and it is not always the easiest to win.

Hammerstrom said one difficulty is trying not to feel intimidated by the talent and experience others have at the competition.

“I was nervous before every round, but eventually I got over it,” said Hammerstrom. “It felt really good to win.”

Despite the nervousness that comes along with performing, Hammerstrom let her nerves be motivation for success. Some of the teammates have different strategies for being confident and doing well at competition.

Butchert says the reason for her success mostly comes from passion.

“I like presenting things to people when I’m really passionate about something,” said Butchert.

Butchert performed an Original Oratory – a speech written from the speaker about a problem in society. Her paper was about objectification of women in society, which she feels is an important topic to discuss, because of its relevancy in society today.

State Qualifications gives many students the opportunity to pursue topics that he or she may want to have voice in, but it may be hard because there’s not always an opportunity to have a solution.

Bermudez said this is why she chose to compete in original advocacy – an event where one writes and performs a piece about a problem in society, and offers a solution to the problem.

“I’m interested in law, and with this event you create your own law,” said Bermudez. “It’s fascinating to me.”

In Bermudez’s paper, she wrote about drug use during pregnancy; she proposed a legislation that would send drug addicted mothers to rehab.

“I thought it was an important topic to discuss, because it is an increasing problem in society,” said Bermudez.

Additionally, she is excited about getting another opportunity to perform her piece at State Competition, and she is also looking forward to competing with a lot of new people.

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State Qualifications