Mr. Rumsey Receives the Educator of the Year Award


Photo courtesy of Mr. Rumsey.

Speech and Debate has always been one of ACP’s most powerful extracurriculars/classes on campus and it’s all thanks to our very own Mr. Rumsey, who coaches the elective and teaches freshman English. S&D brings home trophies on a consistent basis (check out our articles covering them!) and never fails to surprise us all!

This month Mr. Rumsey was chosen for the Arizona State Speech and Debate Educator of the Year Award, a result of his hard work and effort when it comes to S&D. Here’s what Mr. Rumsey had to say about his new accolade and achievement:

Mr. Rumsey (left).

Q: What does the award entail?

A: I believe we won the award because we won a State Championship in our 4th year, which is an amazing feat.  But I also think that our team is very friendly and well respected on the Arizona circuit.  I use the word we, when talking about our team and awards, because this is more of a reflection on the serving, caring community that we have. It is the key to our success.

Q: How did you feel finding out that you received the award?

A: It actually happened in the Arizona S&D Coach’s meeting and I was in attendance. You know the gig;  Someone made a motion. There was a second.  Any other nominations? Any discussion? All those in favor signify by saying “aye.”  Those opposed?  The “ayes” have it.  It was very humbling and awkward.  I’m not a big fan of the spotlight.

Q: How did you celebrate?

A: I watched an episode of Community. Cool, cool, cool.

Last year’s Speech and Debate team at a tournament. Picture taken by Kristin Myer

Q: What has been your biggest accomplishment when it comes to teaching speech and debate?

A: The culture that we have built. We have a LOT of fun. We’re always laughing, but we work hard; we serve each other, but we hold each other accountable. It is a place to develop your leadership skills. The team always gives me a bad time about how I never teach lessons and it’s true: the veterans do all of the teaching. We are genuinely happy when our teammates win a trophy. If you ask a Speech and Debater what they like about S&D, they will almost always tell you, “We’re family.”  It’s just a great place to hangout.

Q: What piece of advice do you always give your speech and debate students?

A: One of our core values is “See the big picture.” In context, that advice means that Speech & Debate (and the world) is not about winning trophies, so rather than focusing on that, see the big picture. There are so many other things that are more important: developing character, building relationships, learning skills and enjoying life.

A huge thank you to Mr. Rumsey for taking the time to give us a little more insight to the inner workings of Speech and Debate. Congratulations on your astonishing award and future endeavors. Go, Knights!