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PHS Senior Receives KSHAA True Blue Scholarship for Debate

The Kansas State High School Activities Association (KSHAA) has named the 2024 True Blue Scholarship Recipients. 34 High School Seniors from across the state were selected for a $2,000 scholarship made payable to a two-year or four-year accredited college, university or technical school. 

Among those 34 recipients is Pittsburg High School Senior Indiana Grotheer for Debate.

"Kansas schools are filled with outstanding students who excel in the classroom, in competition and performance, and in the community," KSHAA Executive Director Bill Faflick said. "Having the opportunity to recognize students from across the state is an honor. We are pleased to partner with the Capitol Federal Foundation® to honor these outstanding students as they graduate and pursue continued excellence in their postsecondary endeavors."

Grotheer has been a member of the PHS Debate team for all four years of her high school career.

“Coaching Indy over the last four years has been such a joy,” PHS Director of Speech and Debate Julie Laflen said. “You never know how a student is going to respond to debate as a novice, but it was clear from the start that debate fueled a passion in Indy.”

During her four years in debate, Grotheer has grown to be one of the top debaters in the state of Kansas, alongside her debate partner Senior Seth Loudermilk. Some of their accomplishments include being 3-time NSDA National Qualifiers in Policy Debate, KDC Varsity Debate Champions, and 5A KSHSAA State Semifinalist.

Laflen says once they were partnered, Grotheer and Loudermilk “found a rhythm and never looked back.” Grotheer and Loudermilk have been debate partners for 3 years.

“I am incredibly surprised and honored to win this award! To be the one person picked in the state to receive the debate award is quite surprising,” Grotheer said. “The only thing that could make it better is if I could share it with my debate partner Seth!”

To be eligible for a True Blue Scholarship students must meet requirements in community service, academic achievement, activity achievement and breadth of school activity participation.

“Her passion, drive to get better each weekend, work ethic, and refusal for mediocrity is the reason Indy was able to have the success she was during her four years as a debater,” Laflen said. “I have been so incredibly proud to coach Indiana and her lasting impact on our debate team will be felt for years to come.”

In the fall, Grotheer will be attending the Honors College at Pittsburg State University to major in Nursing. Grotheer says that although she is not continuing with Debate, she will carry the skills learned from the program at PHS for the rest of her life.


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