Forensics Results


Nov. 4-8: We finally resumed travel, heading out to the United States University Debating Championships (the USUDC), hosted by Hobart & William Smith College in upstate New York. Topics for debate included:

After the tournament, we took a quick day trip out to see Niagara Falls before heading home.

Nov. 9: After getting stuck in Chicago on our way back from nationals, we returned home a few hours before putting on a mock trial for the campus. Sparks flew as our students acted as witnesses, prosecutors, defense lawyers, and the suspect in a pair of bank robberies.

Dec. 2-4: We ended the semester with some hardware! We took three teams to the Seattle University IV, where Benny Schorie and Sierra Reisman made it to the finals in the novice division. It was only Benny's second tournament and Sierra's first!

Some of the topics included

We also had great fun and great food on our first real road trip since COVID-19.


COVID-19 continued to keep us centered in online debate formats. However, we were able to host an on-campus debate centered around the subject "Ring by Spring."


Due to COVID-19, all competitions went into an online format hosted via various platforms like Zoom or Yaatly.

Several of our students competed in Impromptu Speaking – a model in which you are given only seven minutes to both prepare and give the speech – as well as Prose Interpretation.

Emily Meeuwsen was a finalist at the Linfield competition, which qualified her to be George Fox's first competitor at the National Forensics Association National Individual Events Tournament (NFA NIET) in recent memory.

More importantly, we kept using our weekly meetings as a way to de-stress from both politics and the pandemic.


We try to take one big trip each year, which had traditionally been to attend the national tournament (the USUDC). But this year, the tournament was scheduled for Chicago. Nothing against the Windy City, but visiting in April didn't really set our hearts afire.

So we decided to attend the Pan Pacific Debating Championships in Hawaii instead! We were very fortunate, as the tournament concluded just as COVID-19 lockdowns were starting to happen.

The forensics team in Hawaii

Joel Sigrist and Lane Kimbro made it to the semifinal round, Gatlin Cyrus and John Seegobin missed elimination rounds on a tie that had to be broken three levels into the procedure, and Molly Cox and Taryn La Lanne were right there in the hunt, too!

Definitely hoping to go back soon and often!


Justine Hostetler and Anna Gallagher started the year strong, winning top speaker awards at the Oregon State Penitentiary Tournament.

Our big trip in 2019 took us to Clemson and all of its Waffle House goodness.


Our major trip in 2018 took us to the USUDC in Stanford, one of the rare locations in which hotels are more expensive during the week than on the weekend (because of all of the Silicon Valley business trips).

It was also our first all-Uber, all-the-time trip, with mixed reviews.


Our big trip in 2017 took us back to Washington, D.C., for a tournament hosted by the French Embassy. The Lafayette Debates focus on large social issues that affect the entire globe. In this case, we debated about the best immigration policies, especially in terms of the needs of refugees.

In addition to being a wonderful experience, the tournament also adds two powerful motivators to the mix: 1) the winners receive a traveling trophy of one of Lafayette's own maps from the Revolutionary War, and 2) the teams that make it to finals also get a trip to Paris.

Relatively new debater Anna Sovereign made it into elimination rounds, but fell short of the big prize. However, George Fox alumna Jen Newman made it to the final competing in Vanderbilt's graduate program!