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Bethel forensics squad earns high marks at Pi Kappa Delta tournament

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NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – The Bethel College forensics squad performed well at the annual Pi Kappa Delta National Forensics and Debate Tournament, in anticipation of a trip to another national tournament in three weeks.

The Pi Kappa Delta tournament took place this year at Central Michigan University in Mt. Pleasant, March 7-11. Bethel was one of 57 colleges and universities in attendance.

Peter Miller, senior from Partridge, brought home two “Superior” awards, in impromptu speaking and extemporaneous speaking. In the latter, he placed 3rd out of 105 entrants.

Shannon Carey, junior from Moundridge, placed 4th out of 44 entries in after dinner speaking to bring home a “Superior” award in that event.

Robert Weaver, senior from Wichita, earned a “Superior” in impromptu speaking, placing 6th out of 152. Justin Shook, senior from Lyons, and Corey Buchta, junior from Newton, also earned “Superior” ratings in impromptu speaking.

Becky Shulz, sophomore from Newton, earned “Excellent” awards in extemporaneous speaking and impromptu speaking. Weaver brought home an “Excellent” in extemporaneous speaking and poetry interpretation; Carey in informative speaking and impromptu speaking; Shook in persuasive speaking; and Buchta in after dinner speaking.

Pi Kappa Delta is an honorary organization for competitors in intercollegiate forensics and debate. The organization promotes excellence in scholarship, service and performance by recognizing outstanding students with varying degrees of membership.

To become a member of Pi Kappa Delta, a student must meet GPA and competition requirements. The national tournament is open to all members of the organization.

“We have appreciated Pi Kappa Delta because it offers a venue for national competition in both individual events and debate,” said Bethel professor of communication arts John McCabe-Juhnke, who directs Bethel’s forensics program. “For combined programs like ours, it’s our one opportunity to compete nationally in both competitive formats.”

For their last competition of the year, the Threshers will travel to Mankato (Minn.) State University April 6-9 for the American Forensic Association National Individual Events Tournament (AFA-NIET). Bethel has qualified seven students in six events.

Bethel College is a four-year liberal arts college affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. Founded in 1887, it is the oldest Mennonite college in North America. Bethel is known for its academic excellence and has been named a Top Tier college by U.S. News & World Report every year since 1998. For more information, see the Bethel web site at

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