SVSU students qualify for National Forensic Association National Championship

Two Saginaw Valley State University students, Evangeline Cruz, and Nimnan Wuyep, have qualified to compete at the National Forensic Association National Championship in April.

Cruz, a communication major from Detroit, will present in Poetry, Prose and Persuasive Speaking.

Meanwhile, Wuyep, an international studies and communication major from Nigeria, will compete in Poetry, Dramatic Interpretation and Persuasive Speaking.

To qualify for the national competition, students in competitive speech must place in the top six of their chosen events at any competition throughout the academic year.

Cruz qualified while competing virtually in the No Coast Championship hosted by South Dakota State University in February. It will be Cruz’s third time at the national championship, and she expressed enthusiasm about earning her spot at this year’s event.

Wuyep said that he has learned more about himself by participating in competitive speech.

“It did ignite a competitive spirit I didn’t know I had, but it helped me learn how to balance my confidence with other skill sets,” he said. “Getting to compete with individuals from different schools is also a great way to make new friends.”

For Wuyep, qualifying for the national championship makes all his hard work worth the effort.

“It feels exhilarating (to qualify),” he said. “I’m really looking forward to new challenges and opponents.”

Both Cruz and Wuyep have found value in competitive speaking.

“Speech has helped me develop confidence as a person and has taught me important and valuable skills, including communicating to others effectively and developing critical thinking skills,” Cruz said. “Communication is everywhere and through everything we do, and being able to participate in public speaking allows you to develop valuable skills that truly help you exceed as a professional.”

The National Forensic Association National Championship is one of the most prestigious events for college forensic competitors, bringing together students from all over the country.

Cruz and Wuyep will be among those students at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois, when the national championship competition takes place from April 13-17.

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