Dainean Teeluk accepts an award at the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska DDF Championships in March. PHOTO BY JAIME GOEBEL

Members of Skagway’s Drama, Debate and Forensics team are preparing for the National Speech and Debate Association competition in Birmingham, Alabama in June.

Dainean Teeluk, Kara Whitehead, Steaven McKnight and Micah Cook are hoping to put their performances on-stage against thousands of other challengers.

“It’s like the best of the best from all over the country,” DDF coach Kent Fielding said. “Students, I find, who come back, their eyes are open to the larger world of academia as far as what people are doing across the country.”

DDF team members who make the trip to nationals also tend to have an extra edge when the next debate season rolls around.

“It speaks well for what might come next,” Fielding said.

The DDF team needs to raise at least $7,500 in order to take the four students to Alabama. They will be seeking for donations, hosting burger feeds and looking for other opportunities to raise money.

Recently, all the students of the DDF team performed a showcase at the Elks Lodge, showing off a mix of dramatic interpretations, expository speeches and duet acting, and deserts were raffled to help raise money for the trip.