LA Principios Invitational
(November 8, 2014)
This new tournament is the creation of the team’s past coach, Ricardo Velásquez. The event and other instructional support projects behind the scenes are an attempt to give speech and debate access to a greater range of of students, socioeconomically and in terms of age. Over the course of the following year, Velásquez will be developing a series of instructional programs at the school so that a strong crop of home grown Hadden Ave competitors can challenge the vast number of outside speech and debate veterans who made up a bulk of this year’s event. With three different age groupings available (elementary, middle school, high school) for each tournament event offered, it was nice having so many elder North Hollywood student judges available to get the job done.
Hilda Velásquez-Galvez led the El Camino entrants with a 3rd place finish in Impromptu Speaking, a 7th place finish in Student Congress. and a 1st place finish in Original Interpretation. However, she wasn’t the only Velásquez-Galvez to make the march to the podium on this day. Hilda’s younger sisters showed they too have the family forensic skills by taking in a number of awards of their own.
Emily Mercer also represented El Camino, but only entered the Impromptu Speaking contest. She held the 2nd place position at the end of the preliminary flights, but ended up dropping to 4th after a rough Finals round. In between competitions, she assisted tournament Co-Director, Iain Lampert, with various administrative operations throughout the day. Although there was no recognition at the ceremony, Lampert gave something even better than a trophy when he posted the following on Sunday: “I want all of Facebook to know that Emily was EXTREMELY helpful at a Speech Tournament yesterday–efficient and hardworking in the tab room. If anyone here is considering hiring her for anything, they should.”