Speech Team Represents, Hires New Leader

In with the old and with the new! A UNC Charlotte speech and debate team member qualified to attend the oldest and most prestigious public speaking competition in the United States, while the team has brought on a new director to begin in Fall 2018.

Each year, the top two persuasive speakers in every state qualify to attend the Interstate Oratorical Association National Championship, which has been held every year since 1874. This year, the tournament returned to its first location from 144 years ago, Galesburg, Ill., hosted by Monmouth College.  

Rebecca De Luna, a freshman nursing major from Charlotte, represented UNC Charlotte. This has been De Luna’s first year of collegiate competition. In addition to attending the prestigious tournament, De Luna also will have her speech, “Sick and Alone: The Chemical Restraint of the Elderly,” published in the 2018 edition of “Winning Orations.” De Luna’s oration exposes the widespread use of antipsychotic drugs in nursing homes.

With De Luna’s attendance at IOA capping a powerful season led by Forensics Graduate Assistant Tanya Melendez, next season will see a new team director, newly hired Director of Forensics Dr. Nance Riffe.