Goshen College students grapple with peace and justice issues in annual peace speech contest

Event: C. Henry Smith Peace Oratorical Contest
Date and time: Tuesday, Feb. 14 at 7 p.m.
Location: Goshen College’s Umble Center
Cost: Free and open to the public

GOSHEN, Ind. – Five Goshen College students will address current issues of peace and justice in the 2012 C. Henry Smith Peace Oratorical Contest on Tuesday, Feb. 14 at 7 p.m. in Goshen College’s Umble Center. This annual contest gives students the opportunity to get involved in a peace cause as they each deliver an eight- to 10-minute extemporaneous speech.

This year’s student finalists are: senior Bible and religion major Ben Baumgartner (Hesston, Kan.) presenting “Reconciling Relationships: Mennonite Encounters with Muslims”; first-year psychology and communication double major Abby Deaton (Indianapolis, Ind.) presenting “Educating the Hearing on Deaf Education: Mainstreaming versus Residential Schooling”; junior sociology major Alison Reist (North Liberty, Ind.) presenting “Peace Through Sport: The Olympic Vision”; first-year peace, justice and conflict studies and Spanish double major Aranza Torres (Waco, Texas) presenting “Our DREAM”; and sophomore peace, justice and conflict studies major Lauren Treiber (Grand Rapids, Mich.) presenting “The Real Occupy Movement: Understanding Capitalism in a Christian Context.”

A panel of students, faculty and community leaders will judge the speakers on originality, integration of topic and peace position and general standards of delivery.

The winner of the contest will receive $500, plus a chance to enter the Mennonite Central Committee C. Henry Smith Peace Oratorical Contest. The second place winner will receive a $250 prize.

The peace oratorical contest has been part of the college since the early 1900s. The trust of C. Henry Smith, a Mennonite historian and professor at Goshen and Bluffton (Ohio) colleges, funds the contest, which gives students an opportunity to become involved with the peace cause while cultivating rhetorical skills.

Editors: For more information about this release, to arrange an interview or request a photo, contact Acting News Bureau Coordinator Alysha Landis at (574) 535-7762 or alyshabl@goshen.edu.


Goshen College, established in 1894, is a residential Christian liberal arts college rooted in the Anabaptist-Mennonite tradition. The college’s Christ-centered core values – passionate learning, global citizenship, compassionate peacemaking and servant-leadership – prepare students as leaders for the church and world. Recognized for its unique Study-Service Term program, Goshen has earned citations of excellence in Barron’s Best Buys in Education, “Colleges of Distinction,” “Making a Difference College Guide” and U.S. News & World Report‘s “America’s Best Colleges” edition, which named Goshen a “least debt college.” Visit www.goshen.edu.