Renee Reeves won first place in the Joe and Steve Mercer Memorial Scholarship Speech Tournament, sponsored by the Department of Communication and Journalism, recently. Reeves, a liberal arts major, won $1,000 for her speech titled, “Homelessness in New Mexico.”

Twenty-two student speakers entered the competition. The top six speakers from the preliminary round advanced to the final round. 

1st place: Renee Reeves ($1,000)
Major: Liberal Arts
Speech topic: Homelessness in New Mexico

2nd place: Barbie Robertson ($750)
Major: Latin American Studies
Speech topic: Improving Common Core

3rd place: Lori Gossett ($500)
Major: Communication
Speech topic: Improving Education in New Mexico

Finalist: Tarah Glenn ($200)
Major: Communication and English
Speech topic: Feeding America:  Childhood Hunger

Finalist: Skyler Mendoza ($200)
Major: Athletic Training
Speech topic: The Puppy Mill Epidemic

Finalist: Marco Torrez ($200)
Major: Communication
Speech topic: The Problems with Slaughterhouses

The scholarship fund was endowed by Mrs. JoAnn Mercer in memory of her late son and husband who were active in collegiate debate as students. Its purpose is to provide support for students interested and excelling in public speaking.