EASTON, PA – Scott Kamen (’21), has finished 6th in the Interstate Oratorical Association’s (IOA) 147th annual championship tournament.
IOA is the longest running public speaking competition in North America. The first tournament was first held in 1874 in Galesburg, IL and had been held without interruption in some capacity every year since . Two students are selected by each state to participate. In 2021, the representatives from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania were both students from Lafayette College (Scott Kamen and Kelly Mwaamba). Traditionally hosted in a unique setting (like in front of the Liberty Bell, or Mount Rushmore), this year the tournament was held online due to travel restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Against the best competitors from each state, Scott finished in the top 12 that advanced to a semi-final round. He advanced to the finals, where he finished in 6th place. Scott is the second Lafayette student to advance to the final round of IOA, following in Saeed Malami’s footsteps from 2019.
Attending this prestigious competition is an honor. Lafayette has a long history of representing Pennsylvania at this tournament. Past IOA competitors include William Jennings Bryan, Senator Robert LaFollette, and Senator George McGovern. Both student’s speeches will be published in the journal Winning Orations.