West Chester students talk their way to victory

West Chester University has some eloquent speakers in its student body.

The state university’s speech and debate team beat out six private colleges and universities in the state championship competition held at West Chester earlier this month, the school announced.

West Chester’s forensics team earned 442 points, beating out second place St. Joseph’s University with 264 points. Other schools that competed include Lafayette, University of Pennsylvania, Cedar Crest, Drexel and Wilkes.

“We’re very happy about that,” said Mark Hickman, team coach and professor of communication studies. He noted that some of the other schools offer scholarships to student speakers, which West Chester can’t afford.

The top four speakers for West Chester were: Dan Hinderliter, a senior education/communication studies major from Allentown; Jake Markiewicz, a senior communication studies major from Avondale; Lanie Presswood, a communication studies major and team president from Bloomsburg; and Jill Heagerty, a sophomore English major from Glen Mills.