Recently, two seniors at Kempner High School, Eric Diep and Brandon Daniels, became the
state champions in Public Forum debate at the Texas Forensic Association State tournament held in Amarillo, TX on March 1-3, 2012. Both students received plaques and a $500 scholarship for their hard-fought accomplishment. Eric and Brandon debated eleven rounds, beating out all of the best Public Forum debaters in the state of Texas. Their Speech and Debate sponsor, Will Mason, is so proud of these students, as this is the first time that Kempner has ever had a state champion in any speaking event.
Other honors received include Jordan Huynh breaking into the finals round in two events taking fifth in the state in foreign extemporaneous speaking and seventh in student congress. Jonathan Adams broke to the semis round in Poetry making him one of the top fourteen poetry readers in the state. Overall, an unprecedented fifteen students from Kempner High School qualified for the state tournament including Eric Diep, Brandon Daniels, Jordan Huynh, Azam Baig, Rafael Acosta, Shane O’Dwyer, Trisha Obinyan, Chinaza Okeke, Danyal Rizvi, Moiz Rizvi, Bradley Iwe, Ryhan Chowdhury, Jonathan Adams, Chris Sabbagh and Michael Mangione.
The state Competition included over 1600 of the best speakers and debaters from across Texas competing in speaking, acting and debate events. Students qualify for the state tournament by breaking to finals rounds at practice tournaments between August and February. All competitors work hard preparing for and competing at these two day tournaments to qualify.