When NIU Forensics team member Julia Boyle wins, the university wins. The 2016 graduate placed third at the Pi Kappa Delta National Collegiate Forensic tournament, and as part of winning, the organization made a monetary donation to the charity of Boyle’s choice.
“Receiving third place gave me the power to contribute financially to a fund I believed in,” Boyle said, a 2015 state champion orator and current graduate student at NIU. “I chose to donate to NIU’s Forward, Together Forward scholarship fund because it awards those with a strong intellect, high regard for others, and excellent moral character. My hope is that my contribution helps fund a student with a need for advocacy, and a genuine concern for others.”
Pi Kappa Delta stands for the Greek phrase Peitho Kale Dikaia – “the art of persuasion, beautiful and just” – which correlates with Boyle’s successful forensics career at NIU.
“That sums up my experience perfectly,” Boyle said. “Persuasion resonated with me in my undergraduate career because I felt like a true advocate.”
Boyle’s winning persuasive speech examined the research ban on guns which was instituted by the National Rifle Association (NRA) in 1996. She argued that the research ban prohibits health organizations like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) from studying guns at all, as it potentially promotes a “gun control agenda.”
“My speech did not attempt to address gun control policy, but instead advocated to allow health professionals to do their job of research,” Boyle said. “Viewing gun violence as a public health issue is a paradigm switch essential to saving lives and framing gun violence as a public health issue. We are always taught to view research as the first step to solving any problem in academia, so it should not be any different for guns.”
Boyle continues to make an impact as an alumni and NIU forensics coach.