Forensics team qualifies for national tournament

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Two Delta college students on the Speech and Debate team are making history.

Erika Jauregui and Jordan Rosales have been invited to the National Parliamentary Tournament of Excellence.

NPTE is a tournament that only accepts 64 speech and debate teams in the nation. The two will be representing one of two community colleges in the competition.

There’s no separation on how four-year universities and community colleges are ranked. The Delta students will be competing with the best in the nation.

“I recruited both of them because what I look for is confidence and for someone that can think logically, said Kathleen Bruce, Delta Forensics coach.

This is Jauregui’s fifth semester on the team and Rosales’ third.

Initially both students didn’t have an interest in joining  the speech and debate team but after being recruited, they gave it a chance and have surpassed expectations.

Jauregui and Rosales qualified as a parliamentary debate team by accumulating a certain amount of points in previous competitions.

To be invited to the NPTE they had to have a minimum of 12 points and they qualified with a total of 13.15 points.

The team spoke of two competitions they are proud of: the Golden Gate Opener and the Mile High competitions.

“This is long overdue for Erika. She’s been doing this for a long time and Jordan always had a fire and what separates them is work ethic and that’s what you got to have to be competing at this level. They gel together very well and always push each other,” said Jeff Toney, Delta Forensics coach.

Both students put in hours on and off campus to prepare and better themselves.

The two no longer see this as a class but a passion.

“It’s like a craft, and we look at it as wanting to perfect that craft,” said Jauregui.

The speech and debate team and competitions have opened up many new opportunities for Jauregui and Rosales.

They plan to transfer to  four-year institutions with scholarships that are now being offered to them because of their success with speech and debate.

“Without competing for speech and debate here at Delta I could not afford to go to a four-year next year without the scholarships that I am earning … and if I’m given the opportunity to go to grad school for free by teaching other people, that’s definitely something I will do,” said Rosales.

Toney and Bruce are always looking for students to get involved in the speech and debate team and would like students to see it as a way to grow in their communication and life skills.

The speech and debate team is open to all students.

Delta Forensics practices are held Tuesdays and Thursdays in Holt 410.