BY KAYDEE DWYER
Truman’s Speech & Debate team recently participated their first in-person tournament in just under two years. For what seems like forever, COVID has forced many high schools to have strictly online tournaments, which definitely pulled the team in many directions. But now, it was the year – the year to come back together and perform once again.
In the process, Truman students made a lot of friends and made even more accomplishments. Truman took home a total of five wins from the final rounds of both Speech and Debate while attending Blue Springs South… They even got these shirts from the host school.
“I think it went really well, our team did a really good job of adjusting to the in-person environment again,” Shelbee Reeves, the vice president of debate said, “And although it was chaotic at times, we had a lot of fun.” Reeves also went on to say that, as a junior now, the last time she participated in a tournament was on March 13, 2020. Between the struggle of online tournaments and an unfamiliar disconnect with your teammates who you have known for so long, there were many people coming to the conclusion of quitting, or not returning after the online season. One of these people is Danilo Book, who has said , “I felt pretty disillusioned. I knew I couldn’t keep doing what I was doing. I needed something new, so that’s why I picked up debate.” Some people needed a change throughout their time and performance in speech, even if it was just a small one. Online tournaments had a different effect on everyone though – Leia Minks, one of Truman’s newest additions to the team has said, “I miss socializing with people, I don’t think I ever thought about quitting.”
Now that this year is giving the speech and debate community the chance to be a part of in-person tournaments, many people are getting their motivation back as they return to the scene of the performing arts; which includes Truman’s Speech & Debate team.