Debate Team

Simpson’s national championship public forum debate team had plenty of hardware to haul after the 2013 tournament: From left, Dustin Peters, Steffi Lee, Jacy Gomez, Ethan Frederick, Alex Severn and Nate Connealy.



Simpson College debate team is an award-winning team that competes across the country. The team provides great opportunities to get involved on campus and meet new people. By joining the debate team, you will increase your public speaking abilities and ability to think quickly and creatively.

What is debate?
Jacy Gomez and Julius Foster

Jacy Gomez and Julius Foster take home a win at the Bulldog Battle at Butler University in January 2013.

Debate is a research and presentation process often involving competitions at the collegiate level. Students gather general knowledge about the provided competition topic and then dig deep into research and discover pros and cons to each side of the topic. They pick their best arguments and form a case. Then as a team, they practice competing against each other to prepare for interschool competition.

The Competition

A round of debate consists of two speakers consecutively presenting their cases confidently and persuasively. The second speaker must think on her/his feet to combat the criticisms of their opponent while presenting the case. The back and forth between the two speakers is quick, intense and exciting for the speakers, audience and judges. Judging is based on the persuasiveness of the arguments presented by the speakers.


Awards and Recognition

Simpson College is currently the only college in Iowa and one of the first colleges in the nation to offer public forum debate.

2013-2014 Academic Year Awards

Indy Forensic 500 in Indianapolis:Debate Teams at Indy Forensic 500
  • Ethan Fredrick was named the 2nd best speaker at the tournament in a field of 54 speakers.
  • Tyler Millard placed 5th in After Dinner Speaking.
  • Ashley Gomez was 4th best Novice in Impromptu.
  • Kiley Murray placed 8th in Extemp.
  • Tegan Jarchow 2nd best Novice in Prose
Parliamentary League of the Upper Midwest’s tournament at Bethany Lutheran in Mankato, MN:
  • Simpson College topped Bethany Lutheran in overall team points
  • Duo Paul Safford and Dana Bohan placed second to Bethany Lutheran
  • Ethan Fredrick was named top speaker
  • 3rd place speaker was Paul Safford
  • 7th place speaker was Jacy Gomez
Marietta McDonnell Tournament in Ohio:Simpson Debate
  • Simpson College won the overall tournament
  • Team Ethan Fredrick and Jacy Gomez finished the tournament with a perfect 7-0 record in Parliamentary Debate.   In the championship round, Fredrick/Gomez defeated Grove City College on a 3-0 decision.
  • 2nd place in overall team points
  • Ethan Fredrick was named top speaker
Bulldog Battle at Butler University in Indianapolis, IN:
  • Simpson College won both the Public Forum Division and overall sweepstakes in Public Forum Debate.
    • Jacy Gomez and Robert Lyons were the top debate team and were named 1st and 2nd speaker respectively in the event
  • In their first ever entry into the Parliamentary Debate event, the team of Jacy Gomez and Paul Safford ranked 4th after preliminary rounds.  They lost to Purdue University in the quarter-finals on a 2-1 decision.
    • Jacy was named 8th speaker in Parliamentary Debate
  • Emma Kain placed 5th in Novice poetry
Simpson Debate and Speech team at Butler Battle January 18 2014

RaeLea Jones, Ashley Gomez, Robert Lyons, Marissa Belau, Michelle Beving, Tegan Jarchow, Paul Safford, Jacy Gomez, Jacob McLain, Kiley Murray, Coach Spencer Waugh, Emma Kain and Ellen Keyser represented Simpson College in speech and debate events at the Bulldog Battle in January 2014.

Missouri State Collegiate Forensic Tournament in Warrensburg, MO at UCM:

Jacob McClain, Jacy Gomez, Tegan Jarchow and Paul Safford won awards at the Missouri State Collegiate Forensic Tournament

  • Simpson College Debate Team won the tournament in Public Forum with a combined record of 12-3
    • Jacy Gomez and Paul Safford defeated Southwest Baptist University on a 3-0decision to win the tournament.  They were named 2nd and 6th speakers at the event.
    • Tegan Jarchow and Jacob McClain defeated Northwest Missouri State on a 3-0 decision to advance to semi-finals.  Jacob McLain was named 3rd speaker.


In other news, the following Public Forum Debate Teams are now fully qualified to compete at CPF Nationals in February:

  • Paul Safford & Jacob McLain
  • Ethan Fredrick & Tegan Jarchow
  • Emma Kain & Jacy Gomez
  • Kiley Murray & Michelle Beving

Public Forum Debate Team


2012-2013 Academic Year Awards

Jacy Gomez and Ethan Frederick named top public forum debate team in the country.

Jacy Gomez and Ethan Frederick named top public forum debate team in the country.

Pi Kappa Delta recognized the Simpson College team of Jacy Gomez and Ethan Fredrick as the top team in the country based on preliminary rounds.  Courtesy of Pi Kappa Delta, you can see the final showcase debate here:

  • CPF National Championship.
  • Team Sweepstakes at Butler University.
  • Webster University Gorlok Gala in St. Louis.
  • Debate Sweepstakes award at the Pi Kappa Delta National Tournament.


For more information or if you are interested in joining the team, contact Spencer Waugh at