RANDOLPH, NJ- The Randolph Speech and Debate team drove up to Harvard to compete at the 44th Annual Harvard National Forensics Tournament on February 16-19. Bringing in its largest group of students in years, – around forty competitors – the team was quite successful. 

The Harvard invitational is the largest forensics tournaments of the season, bringing in hundreds of teams from not only across the nation, but also across the seas. Spending a weekend with hundreds of other participants in speech and debate, students were able to meet a variety of competitors and make new friends as they competed.

The team pulled in some amazing results, both veterans and first-year competitors alike. Ranging from speech events such as interpretation events in which individuals performed a piece to debate events such as public forum in which participants debated current issues, the team shined.

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Bryn Bennett – quarterfinalist, Humorous Interpretation & 2nd Place, Program Oral Interpretation

Claudia Pietrus – semifinalist, Original Oratory

Kathryn Altman – quarterfinalist, Humorous Interpretation 

Allie Wu & Paul Ward – double-octafinalists, Junior Varsity Public Forum Debate

Brenna McConnell and Dylan Park & Katie Sidebotham and Julia Yan – 4-2 records in Junior Varsity Public Forum Debate 

Caitlyn Dempsey – double-octafinalist, Dramatic Interpretation & Octafinalist, Program Oral Interpretation

Senior Bryn Bennett shared a few words regarding her last year of competing, “As emotional as I am about it being my last Harvard, I can confidently say that it was one for the books! It was incredible to achieve what has been my dream throughout high school, but the true magic of the weekend was watching my teammates grow as competitors and have a ton of fun.”

As a bittersweet last Harvard for some, or an eye-opener to first-year competitors, the team could agree that this was a year to remember. Many other teammates still plan on competing at the highly-acclaimed tournament in the future years to come. As the competitive season nears its end, the team is also preparing for the states and districts tournaments in March.