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Forensics team receives excellence awards at national tournament

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The Carson-Newman University Forensics Team won awards at the Pi Kappa Delta 2021 National Comprehensive Tournament. Pictured from left are team members Gracie Keel, Josh Armetta, Kayden Stiltner, Bella Lowrance, Sky Mitchell and Austin Durham.

(March 25, 2021) JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. — Carson-Newman University’s Forensics team won two excellence awards during this year’s Pi Kappa Delta 2021 National Comprehensive Tournament. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s tournament was held online March 18-21.

Bella Lowrance, a business management junior from Paris, Tennessee, won an excellence award in extemporaneous speaking and was placed eighth as a parliamentary debate speaker. Kayden Stiltner, a junior communication major from Bluff City, won an excellence award in impromptu speaking.

Gracie Keel, a senior communication major from Oakfield, was a national semifinalist in extemporaneous commentary while Daniel Cox, a senior communication major from Hixson, was a national quarter finalist in program oral interpretation.

The team was ranked 24th nationwide.

Director of Forensics Chip Hall said he is proud of all his team has achieved despite being faced with monumental obstacles.

“These students managed to navigate through new technologies and contexts and collectively showed their rhetorical prowess,” he said.

Hall also acknowledged the invaluable help from their assistant coach, Ellie Hodges.

I'm proud of all they accomplished, but I'm even more proud of how they collaborate, of how they advocate, of how they empathize, and ultimately how they stand together,” said Hall.

Founded in 1851, Carson-Newman is a Christian liberal arts-based university affiliated with the Tennessee Baptist Convention. The University is located in Jefferson City, Tennessee, among the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains and celebrated a record 2,900 students in the fall. Carson-Newman offers 50 undergraduate majors, as well as associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees.

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