Earlier this spring students from schools in the Bootheel to St. Louis and many in between competed in the District 7 Speech, Debate and Theatre Tournament at Southeast Missouri State University. Many students, including several from Cape Girardeau, Jackson and Scott City, qualified for the state competition. Local state qualifiers include:n Shane Greaser and Danielle Swoboda from Cape Girardeau Central High School in the cross-examination debate;
* Jessica Stearns from Jackson High School in the Lincoln Douglas Debate;
* Jillian Bowers and Blake Kidd from Central in the public forum debate;
* Lydia Meece and Seth Williams from Jackson and Jillian Bowers and Austin Wicker from Central in duet acting;
* Eva Trunzo from Jackson and Maria Drury from Scott City High School in dramatic interpretation;
* Tony Guidos from Central in extemporaneous speaking;
* Taylor Poore from Jackson in humorous speaking (also a state finalist);
* Lydia Meece from Jackson in poetry reading;
* Leasley Dennington from Central in prose reading;
* Kelsey Martin from Central in radio speaking;
* Andrea Gray from Scott City and Kelsey Martin from Central in storytelling.
Public speaking is something that challenges some, but it is important to nearly any type of career one seeks. Having the courage to compete at the district level is deserving of a commendation in itself, but to win districts and advance to state is that much more remarkable.
Congratulations to the District 7 finalists as well as the many other participants on achieving oratory excellence.