University of Wisconsin-River Falls

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Oct. 22, 2004


Forensics Team Places in Twin Cities Tourney
By Molly Exner
UW-RF News Bureau

The UW-River Falls forensics team kicked off the academic year by receiving two awards in its first challenge at the Twin Cities Forensics League Tournament held at Normandale Community College in Bloomington, Minn., on Oct. 12.

Renee Schott, a senior from Greenleaf, Wis., majoring in pre-vet animal science, and Adam Helbach, a junior from Brule, Wis., with a double major in English and speech education, composed the winning team.

Schott and Helbach took first place in duo interpretation. Schott also took second place in informative speaking with a speech on the impact of polio in 2004. Schott has been involved with forensics since her freshman year at UW-RF, and Helbach competed in 2002-03 and again this year.

Kathy Olsen, director of forensics and lecturer in speech communications and theatre arts, at UW-River Falls, believes the quality and commitment of individual team members is a driving force behind the team's success.

James Pratt, co-director of forensics and professor of speech communications and theatre arts, agrees. "The beauty of forensic competition is that each individual student can compete and advance independently," he said. "Although there are team awards, the awards for each individual event are most important."

Both Olsen and Pratt competed in the Twin Cities Forensics League while they were in college. Pratt was the executive secretary for more than 36 years and has been involved with UW-RF debate and forensics since 1977.

The UW-RF Forensic Team will host its second event on Saturday, Oct. 30. Both Schoot and Helbach will join their team members as they attempt to achieve their next victory at home.

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