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Sarah Corn practicing ‘Victims’ for her Oral Interpretation for the recent Jeff City competition. 


Troy Buchanan High School Speech and Debate members have been taking and using all their free time to better themselves through their season. The students are have done well compared to past years, receiving first-place multiple times already. 

“This year I have done incredibly well, I’m currently in the running for Greater St. Louis (GSL) district champion in prose, and I have taken home trophies varying from first to fourth at almost every tournament I’ve competed at,” Melany Kopesky, president of Speech and Debate, said.

Speech and Debate has given these students valuable skills they can use in the real world. 

“It’s shaped me into who I am today,” senior Denise Crocker said. “It made me come out of my shell and become the person I’m actually supposed to be.”

These students are able to take different skills they had on their own and build on them. In Speech and Debate there are multiple events that can be chosen to participate in. 

“I have competed in just about everything,” Melany Kopesky, said. “I typically am a Public Forum Debater who also competes in Duo Interpretation as well as Prose or Humorous Interpretation. 

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Speech and Debate meeting discussing the Jeff City competition. From left: Melany Kopesky, Denise Crocker and Jerome Smith.

Melany Kopesky added she encouraged anyone interested to join. Sophomore Sam Kopesky said joining the team has taught her to balance things like school, work and practice for activities and relaxation time.

There are many different types of people in Speech and Debate that find their own thing. They have made their own family within the club. 

“I would love to say debating or acting is my favorite part but really it’s the family that comes along with the team that you don’t really get most of the time,” Crocker said.

Students are really coming together as a team this year and hope to grow more and more every year. The seniors will be graduating in just a few months and with them leaving, the team will need new recruitments.

“Just do it!” Crocker said. 

“Don’t be scared, because honestly there’s going to be maybe five people watching you. That is if it’s a good turnout, so if you’re scared of public speaking it is okay – you’re not really public yet pretty much speaking to a wall and it is a lot of fun.”

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