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Paths to National Success (Speech, Debate, Mock Trial)



Are you ready to embark on an exhilarating journey towards national and international recognition in speech, debate, and mock trial competitions? At ModernBrain, we're passionate about empowering competitive K-12 students to achieve their full potential in after-school enrichment programs, and we're here to guide you through the intricate paths to success in these dynamic arenas.


Speech Path

  • Register your school with the National Speech and Debate Association to accumulate honor society points.

  • Achieve academic all-American status with 750 points and a good GPA. Get premier distinction with 1500 points. Aim for the national leaderboard beyond.

  • Compete in local league tournaments to qualify for the state championship. You must register with your school, participate in a league tournament, and then place in the top contestants at a state qualifier.

  • Participate in prestigious invitational competitions like UC Berkeley and Harvard.

  • Advance to the National Speech and Debate Association Championship through qualifying tournaments (both a local district tournament and a last-chance online qualifier in May).

  • Explore opportunities at the National Catholic Forensics League (register your school with a local diocese and place highly at a local qualifier) and Tournament of Champions (Kentucky; you need to earn 'bids' at highly competitive tournaments throughout the season).

  • Compete in the National Individual Events Tournament of Champions and Extemp TOC at Northwestern. Like the Kentucky TOC, you qualify to these through earning 'bids' at tough tournaments during the year.

Debate Path

  • Follow a similar trajectory as speech, but with variations:

  • Compete in the National Parliamentary Debate League Nationals and Tournament of Champions (qualify by placing at tough tournaments during the season; you must go under your school's name, but you can attend as a hybrid team if accepted).

  • Attend the National Debate Coaches Association Championship under your school's name (by placing highly at competitive tournaments).

Mock Trial Path

  • Participate in the Empire tournament series, offering both novice-friendly and world championship options (in-person in September/November; online in October/May). You can compete as an academy.

  • Engage in global competitions like the International Mock Trial Championship, hosted online multiple times per year. This is affiliated with the Peer Potential Mock Trial championship, the Chinese national championship (held in Shanghai in August).

  • Apply for prestigious events like the MockOn Tournament of Champions (application-based, can attend as an academy) and Gladiator Championship (application-based, only open to the top individual competitors in the world).

  • Compete in state and national championships after winning local and regional competitions. Must go with your school.


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