One Year Later… My Remembrances in Speech and Debate By: Kaitlyn Butts

One year ago, I was working hours each day to prepare for the 2017 NCFCA National Championship. Each day I gave impromptus, studied my apologetics cards, read the news, brushed up on my platform speeches, honed my LD cases, perfected my arguments, and researched outside cases in the Moot Court packet. It’s been seven years since I attended my first tournament and nearly one year since I became the NCFCA sweepstakes champion. My freshman year of college has stretched, challenged, and grown me in ways the girl who walked across that stage couldn’t have imagined. My tangible awards are on the shelves and stuffed in the drawers of my room… they collected a lot of dust while I was away. I understand that it could be easy to assume that I remember my time in NCFCA through the lens of my successes, but I’ve had a year to reflect. I want to share what I still hold near to my heart as I look back. These lasting memories shape who I am and how I coach current and future competitors. These are my remembrances…

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What is a Speech and Debate Champion? By: Abby Wright

Abby Wright knows what it is like to be a champion. She is a two time NCFCA champion, not just for one event, but two. She is the NCFCA 2015 After Dinner Speaking Champion and the 2017 Persuasive Champion. Here is her perspective on what it means to her to be a “National Champion.”

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Being a Communicator for Christ by: Abbey Lovett

What does it mean to be a good communicator for Christ? So many organizations, speech and debate leagues, coaching companies, etc all share a mission statement along the lines of “training up communicators for Christ”. But what does that actually mean? Join Abbey Lovett as she explores what this means… Abbey is a National Champion speaker, has created her own communication consulting firm- Lyceum Communications, and on top of all that- she coaches for Lasting Impact!… Remember there is still time to sign up for Abbey’s Storytelling Workshop (part of the Lasting Impact! Workshops Series)… For more info. CLICK HERE.

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Speech and Debate- Coaching versus Mentoring


I get asked all the time, how did I start coaching, what is the process I use to coach, etc. Although I consider myself a "Speech Coach", I actually think I am more of a "Mentor". Lately I have been analyzing the difference between coaching and mentoring, and what approach I have, so that I can help you become a better coach (or mentor). Maybe what I do is more of a hybrid method...

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Guest Blog: Grappling with Grendel: Seeking Growth above Trophies

I had the priveledge of coaching and working with Alexander Kidd (along with the other amazing members of his club in Ohio) this past year, and specifically witnessing his speech journey. I asked him to share what he learned this year. As you are grappling with what events to participate in, I hope you take heart Alexander’s message….

From my first days as a Speech and Debate competitor, I considered myself, first and foremost, a debater. My categorization of speeches could be generally understood as follows:

1. interps are great for amusement (from the Latin: a + musa or without thought).

2. platforms are not for me.

3. limited preps are worth doing to avoid timing them.

Perhaps, I overstate my mindset, nevertheless, I most certainly viewed speech as something to pass the time between debate rounds. Yet this past year, which also happened to be my senior year, I had something of a mindset switch. Now please don’t misunderstand me, none of this new revelation in anyway dampened my passion for debate. But it did cause me to view my involvement in Speech and Debate through a different lens.

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Your Season’s Over… Now What?

For some competitors the last Qualifier or Regionals may be their last stop in their "Speech Journey". Other students might have the opportunity to compete at a National Championship. Regardless of when the competition ends... It will end, and the season will be over. Now what? Not everyone can walk away a "champion". In fact, when you think about it- the riding off into the sunset with a first place trophy at Nationals doesn't happen to everyone. But is this why you started this journey in the first place- a big trophy? Were you motivated to learn about a certain subject? Did you have something to share? I challenge you to remember where the journey started and why...Where did your Speech begin? Why did you write it?

Your Speech does not have to stop at your last Qualifier, Regionals, or even Nationals! Was your Speech only made for competition? I doubt it! I bet there are many audiences that would benefit from hearing your Speech!

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Guest Blog- When There is No Next Season, By: Matthew Harper

My first exposure to speech and debate was six or seven years ago. My dad judged Lincoln Douglas debate while my ten-year-old self and my little brother huddled in a corner, awed by the big kids in suits. They possessed so much more swag than me. As they discussed weighty concepts, wrestled with philosophical objections, and tried to persuade my dad to vote for their side, I said to myself: this is so boring! At least the hospitality food’s good.

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Guest Blog- A Letter to the Disappointed, By: Anna Johansen

This article was originally posted on by Anna Johansen. Anna is an NCFCA Alumni with a great perspective! She wrote this article after a Regional Championship.  I am blessed to be able to share her message with you all… I think this is a message that needs to be shared, especially after Nationals…

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National Championship: Arrive in the Right Frame of Mind

I've traveled with groups of teenagers to many an outing, school trip, or competition.  One of the most important things I've learned about getting there with some mental margin and physical peace is to lay out a very deliberate approach plan.  This is one that worked really well with a special group of six kids I traveled with one year.  We set aside the ten days prior to our departure and we were deliberate about performing that day's tasks.  Here's what the task list looked like:

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