Olivia Yee, a senior at Kennedy High School, has qualified for the National Speech and Debate Association (NSDA) National Tournament for the fourth straight year.

Yee competes in informative speaking, where students prepare and deliver an informational speech using visual aids. Her speech this year covered the topic of blue foods—such as seafood—as the future of protein. She will prepare a new speech for the national tournament.

“I’m thrilled to have come to Kennedy in time to work with this extraordinary young woman throughout her high school career,” says Cyndy Woodhouse, Kennedy NSDA coach. “While this year has been a bit of a struggle (really, for everyone), Olivia still managed to put together an outstanding and thoughtful presentation and show off the polished and energetic speaking abilities which make her a national qualifier. She just gives off good vibes!”

Joining Yee at the national tournament will be two Washington High School students, Claudia Gay and Jessica Cline. They qualified in policy debate, where the topic this year is protection of water resources by the U.S. federal government.

“Under normal circumstances, policy debate is almost like full-contact social studies since it is so demanding and truly pushes the limits of highly technical and advanced critical thinking under stress,” explains Warren Sprouse, Washington NSDA coach. “With the added limitations of recent years, the demands are all the greater. For Claudia and Jessica to achieve this success in the circumstances makes them truly elite.”

The national tournament will take place in June 2022.