Nationally Ranked … Again

by Public Relations Office - Cedarville, OH

In the last four years, the Cedarville University Debate Team has been advancing through the upper ranks of the National Parliamentary Debate Association (NPDA), which boasts 350 top debate programs. This year’s team has continued the tradition of national prominence. The team finished the season in 11th place in NPDA, improving their previous rankings of 14th in 2006, 40th in 2005, and 72nd in 2004. The team’s prestigious wrap-up ranked them second among all Christian colleges and allowed them to top nationally recognized teams such as Notre Dame and the University of California, Berkeley.

The ranking follows another dynamic Cedarville debate season, which included first place wins at the Western Kentucky University, Berea College, and Wheaton College tournaments, as well as a second place finish at Purdue University.

Dr. Rebecca Border Sietman ’99, the team’s coach, is deeply appreciative of her team’s efforts. “This year’s NPDA debate nationals were historic for Cedarville. Not only did we achieve our best national ranking thus far, but I also had the opportunity to work alongside seven other coaches in running the tournament … [this] was a prestigious honor for me and for Cedarville University,” she said.

Meanwhile, the Cedarville University Forensics Team traveled to Berry College in Rome, Georgia recently for the national speech tournament of the National Forensics Association. Nearly 75 teams from across the country competed in this five-day tournament.

Karen Williams ’08 vied against 180 other students in the impromptu speaking category and took fifth in the nation. She is the second student in Cedarville’s history to advance to the finals at nationals.

Cedarville’s team placed eighth in the President’s I Division and 20th overall, allowing it to remain a top-20 team for each year it has attended the tournament.

The team is coached by Matt Moore ’92 and Derrick Green ’97, both assistant professors of communication arts. Matt noted, “God blessed the team with safe travel and with unprecedented opportunities to reach out to competitors with acts of service and spiritual conversation. The team continues to make significant, spiritual connections with other students from institutions all across the country.”