RIPON, Wis. (Feb. 5, 2013) – As a testament to the globalization of speech and debate in schools, Executive Director of the National Forensic League J. Scott Wunn judged the National Forensic League of Korea Winter Cup on Jan. 19-20 in South Korea. Hosted at the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea in Seoul, the tournament series featured nearly 400 students vying to compete at the National Forensic League National Speech & Debate Tournament as part of the organization’s International Debate Exchange Program.
“The Winter Cup is a fine example of the burgeoning popularity of speech and debate programs in eastern Asia,” Wunn said. “I was honored to serve on the final round judging panel to help determine which students earned the opportunity to compete in the National Tournament. Our organization looks forward to hosting these extremely talented students when they travel to the United States this June.”
To qualify for the National Tournament, scheduled for June 16-21 in Birmingham, Ala., students had to earn first- or second-place honors in their competitive events. The National Forensic League of Korea expanded its performance categories this year to include several new competitions, including high school Original Oratory, Extemporaneous Speaking and Lincoln-Douglas Debate.
“Our students greatly appreciated the opportunity to be judged by Scott Wunn at the Korea Winter Cup,” said Heidi Hyomin Son, CEO of the National Forensic League of Korea. “Scott’s presence provided strong credibility to what we are trying to accomplish within Korean education. We hope through our partnership with the League, we can create an uplifting educational environment for Korean students.”
To qualify for the Winter Cup, students competed in regional rounds hosted in the South Korean cities of Seoul, Daejeon, Busan and Gwangju. Tournament guest speakers included Dr. Jeong-Woo Kil, member of the National Assembly-Republic of Korea, and Yoon Il Gun, a North Korean refugee and reporter for YonHap News Agency. Also, Yenny Park, member of the popular South Korean music group, Wonder Girls, served as master of ceremonies.
“As the National Forensic League of Korea increases the number of opportunities offered to its middle and high school members,” Wunn said, “we can only expect more students to join our valued program. I’m eager to watch the popularity of speech and debate education expand throughout Korea and beyond.”
To view photos from the National Forensic League of Korea event, visit goo.gl/PQ7li.
About National Forensic League
The National Forensic League is the honor society for middle and high school speech and debate. The nonprofit organization recognizes participation and progress in public speaking and debating activities as a means to meet the Common Core State Standards in listening, speaking, reading and writing. The League empowers students to become effective communicators, ethical individuals, critical thinkers, and leaders in our democratic society. Since 1925, more than 1.4 million students have participated in the League, with more than 120,000 active members representing nearly 3,000 schools. The League awards more than $200,000 in college scholarships at its annual National Tournament, the largest academic competition in the world. For more information, visit www.nationalforensicleague.org.