For the 2016-2017 season, POI is expanding news coverage to include every known parliamentary debate tournament in the United States! And, as you might imagine, that requires a few changes, new faces, and some serious dedication.
We're thrilled to welcome Mehak Sharma, one of last year's Northern California correspondents, to the editing team. Already an editor for Prospect High School's newspaper, the Paragon, Mehak will bring her well-developed writing skills into the role of news editor, working with our correspondents to prepare articles for publication and ensure consistency in their reporting.
Our returning correspondents from last year, Ashland's Karl Moeglein and Ridgefield's Paul Kim, will be stepping into roles with more responsibility, as senior correspondents for their respective regions of Oregon and the East Coast.
And, after a long application period, we're delighted to add five new correspondents to our existing news team, representing every region on the West Coast. With completely new teams in Northern and Southern California, and a group of writers and debaters dedicated to improving the inclusivity and accessibility of parliamentary debate within their communities, we look forward to seeing what this year's news page will grow into.
WITHOUT FURTHER ADO, OUR NEW ADDITIONS. . .
SARAJANE GRIFFITHS, OREGON CORRESPONDENT
SaraJane is a senior at Lake Oswego High School, and has debated since she was a founding member of her middle school debate team in eighth grade. Although last year was her first competing in parliamentary debate, she ended the season ranked 37th in the POI rankings. She reached semi-finals at the Oregon State Championship, making her and her partner the first all-female parliamentary debate team to place in the top three in the state in 10 years. Outside of debate, SaraJane sings in both her school’s classical choir and contemporary a cappella group, plays co-ed recreational soccer with her friends, and is a regular at Powell’s bookstore and local coffeeshops.
EMILY HER, NORTHERN CALIFORNIA CORRESPONDENT
A junior, Emily attends and debates for Dougherty Valley High School. She has done parliamentary debate for three years, and hopes to be able to experience other speech or debate events soon. As the team’s Lieutenant Captain of Parliamentary Debate, Emily has debated with various partners throughout her career in the Golden Gate Speech Association. Apart from debate, she is also an officer of the Art Club, Acts of Random Kindness, Chinese American Youth Association Bay Area, and Future Business Leaders of America organizations. She enjoys Model United Nations and anything art, design, or psychology related. Emily hopes to be able to meet new debaters in the community who are able to share similar interests and can converse about anything, anytime.
SHANNON BONET, NORTHERN CALIFORNIA CORRESPONDENT
Shannon is a sophomore at Campolindo High School, and she is entering her third year of competitive debate. In middle-school, she qualified nationally in the Middle-School Public Debate Program, and began her parliamentary debate career shortly thereafter. Last year, after holding a perfect winning record during her time as a novice, Shannon took 6th place at the Georgiana Hays Invitational, in addition to reaching octofinals at the Santa Clara University Philalethic Invitational. She ended her freshman season among the top 100 ranked teams, and is currently on the leadership board of Campolindo’s debate team as an events officer. Outside of debate, Shannon enjoys babysitting children, light and heavy reading, and adoring her dog, Lola.
CHRISTINA PATRICIA, SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA CORRESPONDENT
Christina is a senior at Torrey Pines High School, where she has participated and competed in parliamentary debate since 2014. She competes mainly in the San Diego Imperial Valley Speech League tournaments, in addition to local invitationals. Aside from debating, Christina enjoys drawing traditional art, raises tropical fish as a hobby, and is a graphics artist for her school's chapter of the Journal of Youths in Science (JOURNYS), a publication by science-minded high-schoolers.
KAVAN NAKAI, SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA CORRESPONDENT
Kavan is a senior at Claremont High School, where he has competed in parliamentary debate for two years. His sophomore year, he earned eighth place in parli at the Citrus Belt Speech Region league championship, setting the stage for a successful junior season. Last year, he reached final rounds at multiple league tournaments, eventually bettering his previous performance to earn 2nd place at his league championship, in addition to becoming co-champion of the Claremont Bargain Belt Invitational with his teammates. He finished the year ranked #40 nationally. Outside of debate, Kavan participates in Mixed Martial Arts, football, is in the IB Diploma Program, and is an avid video gamer.