Two Saginaw Valley State University students captured top honors at the Michigan Intercollegiate Speech League forensics tournament held at Eastern Michigan University March 11-12.
Melinda Dinninger, a communications major from Saginaw, was recognized as the top novice competitor in the oratory/persuasion category. Gina Kearly, a communications and theatre double major from Midland, took home top novice honors and second place overall in the programmed oral interpretation section.
Baron McBride, a communications major from Waterford, and Erik Breidinger, a communications major from Auburn, also competed at the tournament in the impromptu and informative sections, respectively.
After strong performances in previous tournaments, Breidinger, Dinninger and McBride each have qualified to compete in the 2016 national forensics tournament held April 14-18 at Ball State University in Indiana.
Forensics tournaments are communication-based competitions that include events from three genres: platform/public address, limited preparation and oral interpretation.
SVSU, which started its forensics program in 2001, has been able to send students to such events through funding provided by a grant from the SVSU Foundation. Amy Pierce, associate professor of communication, serves as the team's adviser.
Editor’s note: A photo of Dinninger presenting during the competition is attached. A group photo of the four SVSU students who competed is available upon request.