Speech and Debate Team welcomes new members

Speech and Debate Team welcomes new members

Lauren Parrino

On September 25, a Foothill debate was held in Spirito Hall over the controversial topic of healthcare. Two teams, each consisting of two members, proposed their arguments well, despite their young age.

Senior Geneva Douma and freshman Luke Ballmer argued healthcare for all, while senior Steven Ellison and sophomore Aron Egelko supported the “negative” side by stating that “You can’t solve a problem with another problem.”

Douma successfully pointed out that 44,000 people die per year due to lack of healthcare, which is nearly twenty-two people every day.

Because this was not an official tournament a winner was not specified, but Kindred still thought that “it went very well”.

The Speech and Debate Team at Foothill offers new ways for students to interact with their high school and begins its seventh running year at the Blue Ribbon School.

The team’s instructor, Mrs. Jennifer Kindred, had been looking for the opportunity to run a debate and speech team, and she had a feeling that she would find the students ready for the commitment at Foothill Technology High School. Turns out, she was right, and the team was launched in the new school year of 2003.

The Speech and Debate Class offers students the chance to learn rhetoric devices and to engage in multiple drama activities. Students will learn about political issues or school topics, establish their argument, and have the chance to carry out their opinions, such as the controversial topic of a girls’ ability to perform higher than boys’.

“It’s never too late to jump in,” Kindred stated. “There are meetings every Tuesday and debate practice on Wednesdays with Mr. Villa.”

There are no requirements to join the Speech and Debate Team, only that the students manage an acceptable GPA and manage their time well so that they are able to prepare for presented topics. Students don’t have to be extraordinarily gifted in debating or performing to join; the class is designed to help students improve their speech skills and offers mentors to guide them in the right direction.

Kindred added that newcomers and members aren’t on a strict obligation. The class remains relaxed and fun. For tournament participation she said “Go to the ones you can. If you can’t – no big deal!”

The team’s President, Bryan Hickman, is in charge of team meetings and stated that the class “is definitely a good high school experience” and that there are plenty of friendship opportunities.

Steven Ellison, the team’s Speech Captain, exclaimed “What the hey!” when he considered joining the class and claimed he was immediately “sucked in” thanks to the great team bonding experiences.

The next debate will be held on October 22 in Spirito Hall. It will be open to the public, and the entrance is free.

What do you think?