Blinn College students showcase skills at intercollegiate speech and debate tournament

Freshmen Raedyn Robinus and Juan Soto compete against four-year universities as Blinn hosts the Texas Intercollegiate Forensics Association Tournament

February 16, 2018

Two Blinn College students recently competed against four-year universities across the state at an intercollegiate speech and debate tournament hosted at the College’s Bryan Campus.

Freshmen Raedyn Robinus and Juan Soto competed on behalf of the Blinn College speech and debate team in the Texas Intercollegiate Forensics Association (TIFA) Tournament, which featured competitors from major universities and colleges across the state.

“Raedyn and Juan competed and performed very well,” Team Advisor Kathryn Kelly said. “This was a big tournament, and I am proud of the progress they have made in just one semester on the team.”

A communications major, Robinus competed in prose interpretation and program oral interpretation, while Soto, an El Paso native majoring in computer science, participated in poetry interpretation, informative speaking, and impromptu speaking. During these events, students are allowed 10 minutes to recite a piece of prepared written work to convey an idea to their audience.

“After each passing competition, I continue to gain more insight into how to effectively deliver my presentations,” Soto said. “I am a very technical person, but I have always loved to read. Poetry has such a special allure, and I joined the team to dive deeper into something I really enjoy.”

The event featured more than 100 total entries from 15 universities and colleges, including Texas A&M University, The University of Texas, Texas State University, and Rice University.

“This is the second consecutive year Blinn-Bryan has hosted the tournament,” Kelly said. “We were chosen at the last minute last year, and it ran so smoothly, TIFA asked Blinn to host it again.”

Though the season has come to a close, the students will continue to work with Kelly to prepare for next season’s competitions.

Blinn’s speech and debate team was launched in Fall 2014, and is open to all Blinn students. For more information, contact Kelly at kathryn.kelly@blinn.edu.

Registration for Blinn’s 8-week Spring courses is available through Sunday, March 18. For enrollment or financial aid information, visit www.blinn.edu.

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