The Doane Forensics Program is a nationally ranked perennial power that competes alongside some of the best young minds this nation has to offer. That said, competition is not our primary focus. We help students find their passion and use the stage as an outlet for their unique voice. Students are not valued based on the number of trophies they earn but the energy, work, and camaraderie they bring to our team and the community.
Forensics is the practice of providing evidence through the spoken word — our association researches and trains in the global skills of argument and public advocacy. Doane Forensics focuses on improving students and preparing them to be agents of change. Members are frequent finalists and award recipients in the Fulbright and JET programs. Alumni of the team hold a vast range of essential positions in academia, government, and business.
At tournaments, students enter preliminary rounds with students from different schools. A coach from another team or a hired judge watches all performances and ranks them. After preliminary rounds are ranked, top students move to elimination rounds. In elimination rounds, a panel of judges rank the competitors, and final placings are determined. Individual placement adds points to a team’s total score. The total team scores determine the top teams at the tournament.
Forensics students represent the best qualities of Doane and are known for their professionalism, friendliness, and competitive excellence. Students conduct in-depth research on innovative, controversial, and vital subjects. They spend their weekends listening to competitors from across the country. The knowledge students bring back to campus, and their willingness to engage in conversations enhances Doane’s culture.
Scholarships and Auditions
The Forensics program at Doane attracts a lot of high-level competitors from high school speech and debate. However, you do not need previous speech experience to audition. Any student with a passion for performance and advocacy can become a Doane Forensics champion.
Our strategic communications major focuses on learning the theories behind public speaking, interpersonal communication, political rhetoric, and public relations. Students may apply their understanding of communication strategies towards careers as communication consultants, marketing managers, and public relations directors.
Our media communications major focuses on content creation for broadcast, digital, print or visual media. Students working towards careers as broadcasters, filmmakers, journalists, social media strategists and more will learn media production through hands-on experience and one-on-one mentoring.
Professor of Communications, Director of Forensics
Nathaniel Wilson has been the Director of the Doane Forensics Program since 2012. Nathaniel has led the Doane Forensics Team to 7 Top 20 National finishes, with a Top 10 finish in 2015. He has received awards of recognition for exemplary coaching at the State, District, and National levels.
Assistant Director of Forensics
Jennifer has been the Assistant Director of Forensics since 2012 and has played an insurmountable role in the building of the Doane Forensics Program. As a coach of the Doane Forensics team, Jennifer helps students discover methods of personal growth and self-improvement. In 2020, Jennifer became the first assistant coach to be awarded the NEbraska Intercollegiate Forensics Association's Distinguishes Service Award.
Kennerly Benraty is a 2018 Graduate of the Doane Forensics Team. In his first year on the coaching staff, Kennerly uses his competitive experience to help students transition into the rigor of college forensics.