Despite the loss of many seniors last year, the Sterling College debate team continues to surprise the competition by regularly advancing past larger, more seasoned teams. Junior Brandon Hoesli of Salina, Kan., has led the team with numerous bids to the final rounds of both Lincoln-Douglas debate and Parliamentary debate.
The weekend of Oct. 19-21 was a replay of previous debate tournaments attended by the Sterling College Debate Team – they returned with a first place finish from their tournament at the University of Central Missouri.
Director of Debate and Forensics Ken Troyer believes in giving back, and he is teaching his students to do the same. This summer, Troyer and his debate team member, Nolan Chaney of South Hutchinson, Kan., had the opportunity to serve together at the Heart of America Debate Institute.
While most students may have spent Spring Break skiing, heading to the beach or even sleeping in, the Sterling College Debate and Forensics Team spent their break attending national tournaments ranging from March 9-27 in multiple states.
The debate team has achieved another significant milestone. Senior Jessica Brayton of Lyons, Kan., and junior Nolan Chaney, of Hutchinson, Kan., have been selected to participate in the National Parliamentary Debate Tournament of Excellence (NPTE).
While the weather has been oscillating between winter and spring, the Sterling College debate team has maintained a steady collision course with the National Parliamentary Debate Association Tournament, to be held in March in Bellingham, Wash.
The Sterling College Debate team returned from Texas victorious, winning their 2ndtournament of the season. The tournament was held on the campus of West Texas A&M and co-hosted by Kansas Wesleyan University October 7-9. Sterling had three teams advance to elimination rounds, with Alex Lawhon-Bush and Brett Smith named tournament champions while team mates Jessica Brayton and Nolan Chaney finished 2nd overall, and Brandon Hoesli and Courtney Cavazos placed 3rdoverall. Every Sterling team that participated in the tournament, finished with a winning record.
In 1946, the president of Westminster College sent an invitation to Winston Churchill via Harry Truman, asking him to make an appearance in Fulton, MO. Churchill not only accepted the invitation, but travelling by train along with President Harry Truman, he rode a train across the United States to reach the College. It was at that time and at that location that Churchill delivered perhaps his greatest oration, the "Iron Curtain" speech. The SC Debate team recreated the same trek, albeit by automobile, in accepting an invitation to appear and compete in a debate tournament to honor the legacy of Winston Churchill and his historic address 64 years ago.