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Bethel continues spring forensics competition

September 11th, 2017

NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – Bethel College forensics has been keeping a fast pace as the spring tournament season winds to a close.

At the Kansas State Individual Events Tournament (known as KASIE) held at Ottawa University Feb. 18, Jacob Miller, senior from Westmoreland, was 1st in Persuasive Speaking. That qualified him to the American Forensic Association-National Individual Events Tournament (AFA-NIET) in the event, his sixth and the maximum number allowed an individual.

Miller will also represent Kansas, along with the KASIE runner-up in Persuasion, at the Interstate Oratorical Association (IO) National Tournament in late April.

Bethel was one of seven Kansas colleges and universities competing at KASIE.

In addition to Miller’s 1st-place finish, Candy Dao, sophomore from Salina, also took 1st in Program of Oral Interpretation (POI) as well as 3rd in Prose Interpretation and 4th in Dramatic Interpretation (DI).

Clinton Unruh, senior from Newton, took 2nd in Impromptu Speaking and 5th in Informative Speaking; Akiyaa Hagen, freshman from Salina, 2nd in DI and 4th in Prose; Emily Kondziola, sophomore from North Newton, 3rd in After Dinner Speaking (ADS); and Heather Chaney, sophomore from Erie, 6th in Informative Speaking and “next out” in Persuasion.

On Feb. 19, Bethel took part in the Battle for the Capital Day 2 at the University of Nebraska-Omaha, along with 11 other schools.

Hagen finished 4th in DI and Chaney 5th in Persuasion. Unruh, Dao and Kondziola also competed.

The Bethel team traveled to Hastings, Nebraska, for the Bronco Bash at Hastings College, Feb. 25-26. Bethel was one of 10 schools competing on both days.

On Day 1, Hagen took 2nd in DI, which qualified her to AFA-NIET, her second event.

Unruh was 1st in Informative, Dao 2nd in POI, Shekhinah Jones, junior from Salina, 3rd in both Poetry Interpretation and POI, Chaney 5th in Persuasion and 6th in Informative and Kondziola 6th in ADS.

Bethel placed 2nd in Team Sweeps.

On Day 2, Dao finished 3rd in POI and 4th in DI, Jones 4th in POI, Unruh 5th in Informative and Kondziola 6th in ADS. Chaney and Hagen also competed, adding to Bethel’s points total.

With one week left to get their events to nationals, the Threshers have qualified four students in 12 events. AFA-NIET takes place April 1-3 at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois.

Marsh, Bethel assistant professor of communication arts, is Bethel’s director of forensics, assisted by Gail Stucky, Bethel co-director of libraries.

Bethel College is the only private college in Kansas listed in the analysis of top colleges and universities, the Washington Monthly National Universities-Liberal Arts section and the National Liberal Arts College category of U.S. News & World Report, all for 2016'17. The four-year liberal arts college is affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. For more information, see

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As the first Mennonite college founded in North America, Bethel College celebrates a tradition of progressive Christian liberal arts education, diversity within community, and lifelong learning.