The debate tournament at Wellington High School went well, despite a last-minute scramble to find judges and volunteers.
With over 80 schools being represented in this open tournament, Dorathea Kelly, coach of debate and forensics teams and high school drama director, was swamped with a multitude of tasks necessary to successfully run a debate tournament of this magnitude.
"It takes a lot of volunteers," Kelly said. "We had judges sign up that didn't show up or showed up late, and luckily the other coaches stepped up, and helped with tabulating scores so that I could situate all the judges. I also had some drama students volunteer to assist with kitchen duties. Though, a lot of kids do both drama and debate."
Adam Hradil, a fourth year debate student, senior, and National Qualifier, touts the many benefits of debate. "It dramatically improves how well you can speak, not only to people in an audience but as well as your peers, and parents. It also really helps with your analytical and critical thinking."
According to Kelly, Adam was "bit by the acting bug, last year when another student requested that he do a duet with her."
Darious Jones, also a senior and 4th year debater, added that increased organizational skills are a huge plus.
Avaunghtai Clark, first year debating senior, regrets not having joined debate sooner. "I figured it was time for something new, and it's something I learned to love. Had I known I would love it this much, I wouldn't have taken it because it's my last year. I'm hooked."
These seniors are looking forward to possibly debating in college. They also feel that their experience will help them in their career paths.
"There are several occupations that you can go into, including law. That is my ambition, to go into law," Hradil explained. "Believe it or not, it actually improves your imagination, because some of the arguments that other teams will run will just blow your mind."
Jones plans to use his experience in the military. "I have recently joined the United States Navy, and I am going into the field of nuclear engineering. The organization skills when it comes to me communicating with other shipmates actually is a skill set that the Navy requires, knowing how to speak to people."
The task of a debater is to research the topic being argued, anticipate the rebuttals of their opponents, and have counter arguments for rebuttals offered.
The seniors are leaving behind a legacy, but will not leave Wellington empty handed. Competitors such as Mitchell McGuire, Taylor Prickett and Noah Rinehart will bear the torch of a strong debate team.
Rinehart, freshman and first year debater, is a promising up-and-coming star. Although Rinehart was not willing to boast about himself, fellow debater Jones made sure to brag. "Being a novice, he's done fairly well. In his last tournament he pulled a perfect record."
Page 2 of 2 - Overall, Wellington Debate team shows great commemoratory and a positive, competitive spirit. If you would like to help support the efforts of these promising students, the drama department will be hosting a "Super Hero Movie Night" on November 23 at 6:00, A Christmas movie night will be held on December 7th. $6 will get you admission to three movies and popcorn, and there will be a concession stand available for additional food purchases.