Passion at the Podium

Good speaking skills are definite tools for the future, for school, the workplace and beyond. To prepare their students with such skills, high schools and colleges across the country feature Speech and Debate clubs of various levels. This year, Westview High School (WVHS) formed its first competitive Speech and Debate team. Armed with words and arguments, the team went on to compete at the State level with impressive results.
WVHS teacher and coach of the team Michael Nguyen explained, “I took over as head coach at the tail end of last year. We had six team members and competed in two tournaments with some success. We now have forty members spread across many of the individual speech events and debate events.”

Michael cited their greatest achievement from this year as the League Debate 3 Tournament, in which they competed against high schools such as Torrey Pines, Carlsbad, and San Dieguito Academy. The three debate events included Public Forum Debate, Lincoln Douglas Debate, and Policy Debate. Amrit Parida and Shivank Nayak placed third in Public Forum, Zoe Navapanich and Brendan Pyle placed second in Policy Debate, and Yah Huilgol and Allen Wilhelm placed fourth in the same event. Zoe and Brendan headed to the recent State Tournament in Modesto representing the San Diego Imperial Valley Speech League in Policy Debate. Michael was proud to reveal that the duo lasted four rounds against the top debate schools in California.

After a year of whirlwind success, Michael added, “As Speech and Debate at Westview moves forward, we are looking to grow our team and increase our involvement in our league.”