Local speechster takes home seventh in nation
Ice cream is definitely a key ingredient to those hot summer days. Just ask Shannon Schaefer.
This past summer, Schaefer, a recent graduate and valedictorian of Moffat County High School. Schaefer traveled to the National Forensic League (NFL) Tournament in Phoenix beginning June 12 and walked away with a seventh place finish in expository speaking.
Her speech, an informative formal speech about ice cream, placed highest among the 80 students representing Colorado. Only two other Moffat County entries have placed higher in the 16-year history of the Moffat County speech team. The speechster placed higher than 148 other competitors.
“I’m really pleased with the results,” Schaefer said, “but speech was really all about self-discovery. I learned a lot about myself, my limits and my abilities through all of the speech experiences in the past three years. It was an elevating ride.”
Forensic’s coach, Jill Grimes, who has coached more than 20 students to 13 NFL tournaments since joining the national forensic in 1983, said, “Shannon’s quest for excellence in speaking has brought her well-deserved awards. I’m so pleased that she ended up ranking higher than any other speaker in any other category from the state of Colorado.
“It bodes well for Shannon, her excellent background and upbringing and the Moffat County school system. It demonstrates that even students from ‘little old Craig, America’ can compete with, and excel over, even the toughest intellectual speakers in the nation. The whole community should take pride in this and all of their accomplishments.”
Some students are choosing to chart their own course after graduation, bucking the conventional path of college or trade school, but with no less ambition than their degree-seeking peers. Moffat County High School senior Tyler Gonzales is one such student, who has chosen to dive into a full-time job at Chaos Ink after graduating and feed his passion for design and entrepreneurialism.