For the second week in a row, the El Paso Community College (EPCC) Forensics and Performance Studies Team won 1st Place during the American Forensic Association national season.
“To succeed, students must have a foundation in current events, social issues, politics, economics,foreign affairs, literature, basically all of the Liberal Arts and Sciences,” said Keith Townsend. “Seeing our students not only possess the knowledge, but seeing that they can take that knowledge, operationalize it in competition with their peers and win these national competitions speaks volumes about not only their talents as performers, but also their abilities as academic scholars.”
The team won the Community College Team Sweepstakes Award at the 2017 American Forensic Association National Individual Events Tournament (AFA-NIET) held April 3rd at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. The El Paso team competed against the top 79 universities and colleges in the nation at this prestigious competition.
This year’s win is EPCC’s 5th NIET Top Community College National Champion Team, winning the 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 in addition to the 2017 award, the only community college team to win this recognition more than three times as well as winning it five years in a row.
The AFA-NIET is considered to be the most competitive national tournament and the most challenging for participants to qualify. To compete at this national competition, students must place in the top final rounds at three different qualifying tournaments during the invitational competitive season, which runs September through February each academic year.
The national EPCC’s Team in March won an Individual Events Sweepstakes Honor, Community College Sweepstakes Honor and an Overall Combined Team Sweepstakes Award at the Pi Kappa Delta National Tournament held at Boise State University in Boise, Idaho. The team competes at their final tournament, the Community College Phi Rho Pi National Tournament, April 11 th and 12 th in Washington DC.
Competing for the El Paso team at this year’s NIET was Diego Oropeza, Erick Canales, Sabas Del Toro, Jordyn Catanach, Jaeme Orfanos, Sarah Curtis, Hannah Perches, Salvador Ali Mendoza, Cesar Hernandez, Diego Parada, Sabrina Bustillos and Carla Rodriguez. The team is directed by Professor Keith Townsend, Assistant Coach Joel Anguiano and Student Coaching Assistant Christina Del Marquez.