News

Union to Host NITOC Debate Tournament for Third Time

High school debate students from across the country will participate in the National Invitational Tournament of Champions at Union May 27-June 1.
High school debate students from across the country will participate in the National Invitational Tournament of Champions at Union May 27-June 1.

JACKSON, TN — January 25, 2024

Union University will host the National Invitational Tournament of Champions (NITOC), a national speech and debate tournament for homeschooled students Monday, May 27, through Monday, June 1, 2024, that is expected to draw about 600 competitors along with their families.

This year marks the third time Stoa, a national junior high and high school speech and debate league for privately educated Christian homeschooling families, has held the National Invitational Tournament of Champions on Union’s campus. Union also hosted the NITOC in 2017 and 2021.

The tournament is one of the largest high school forensics national championships in the country, including public and private schools.

“Hosting NITOC has been a huge honor for Union University, and we’re thrilled to welcome participants from all over the country back to campus this year,” said Dan Griffin, Union’s vice president for enrollment management. “NITOC competitors are bright, talented young people. The event is always a positive experience for Union, and we’re looking forward to what we expect will be another great competition.”

Griffin noted that with hundreds of students and their families in attendance, NITOC is a benefit to the local economy and businesses such as hotels, restaurants, and other retail stores. Many families will also purchase goods they need just for their time in Jackson and leave them behind when they depart. Griffin said Union will collect those goods and donate them to the Dream Center.

In addition to the community boost, Griffin said that Union benefits from NITOC. More than 50 NITOC competitors have enrolled at Union since it first hosted the tournament in 2017.

To make the event successful, Griffin said about 1,000 judges from Union and the Jackson community will be needed for the competition.

“One of the amazing privileges of hosting the tournament is our ability to participate through providing community judges,” Griffin said. “You do not have to have previous experience as they provide all the training, and you will get to witness some of the most talented speech and debate students compete for thousands of dollars’ worth of scholarships.”

Learn more about becoming a judge.


Do you like what you are reading? Like and follow Homeschool Roster on Facebook.

Get updates and keep up with Tennessee homeschool news. Subscribe to Homeschool Roster.

Check out upcoming Homeschool Roster field trips and events.