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Dallas Treder, a homeschooled, dual-enrolled student at Central Florida Community College, won Third Place in Informative Speaking, and Sixth Place in Parliamentary Debate, at the 2009 State Forensics Tournament. Although forensics may remind you of the latest episode of CSI, in this case forensics actually means debating and speeches. The tournament was held at Tallahassee Community College in February, and took place over an exhausting four days.
During that period, each contestant competed in each of the events in which he or she was entered at least three times, before three different judges. Dallas was entered in four events (two debate and two speech), so he had to rise to the occasion a total of 14 times. Plus, the debate and speech portions of the tournament require different skills of the contestants. For example, Dallas had written and perfected his informative speech over the course of the past two semesters. In contrast, students were given less than 20 minutes to prepare arguments for the parliamentary debate portion of the event.
A Mathematics major at CFCC, Dallas is a member of Phi Theta Kappa (the Honor Society for Community Colleges). Dallas originally dual-enrolled at the Chiefland campus of CFCC, when he was thirteen, but only joined the Forensics Team in August, 2008, when he began attending the main campus in Ocala. Although Dallas would like to compete in more forensics tournaments, he is scheduled to graduate with an A.A. in May. After a grueling three years, and at the ripe old age of 16, he is ready to take off for a semester or two before deciding where he will continue his education--hopefully, someplace with lots of snow and a class-A forensics team.