Dr. W. Scott Nobles, the Director of Forensics at Oregon from 1951-1970, was the driving force behind two of the most successful decades in the long and proud history of Oregon Forensics. Dr. Nobles was the winner of the very first National Debate Tournament as an undergraduate and two decades later his colleagues selected him as the “College Coach of the 1960s”.
Dr. Nobles built a powerhouse program in both speech and debate and his teams regularly dominated the tournaments they attended. At one tournament in 1961, for example, the students in Oregon Forensics competed so successfully that they collectively accumulated more sweepstakes points than all other 11 schools at the tournament – combined. Dr. Nobles’ final year at Oregon was a success as his program won a National Championship by sweepstakes, meaning his students accumulated more victories across all forensics events over the course of the year than any other school. In 1970, Dr. Nobles moved to Macalester College, where he was a successful director for many more decades and additional national championships.
Dr. Nobles’ daughter Rebecca (Becky) and her husband Greg Mowe both competed at Oregon for their father in the late 1960s. Greg and his partner were the most successful Oregon team at the National Debate Tournament, the premiere national championship tournament.
The Mowes have chosen to honor the legacy of their father by supporting Oregon students competing in forensics through annual gifts for scholarships and a large estate gift that will benefit future generations of students in Oregon Forensics. Current recipients of such scholarships are called Nobles Scholars.
Any undergraduate student competing in Oregon Forensics is eligible to apply for the Nobles Scholarship, with awards that range from $750-$4000, which are typically disbursed to UO student accounts in the Spring of each year. The 4-8 annual recipients are known as Nobles Scholars.
Interested students must apply for the Nobles Scholarship by January 31st each year for awards. Many recipients over the years had no experience before joining Oregon Forensics. A scholarship committee in the CHC, including the current Director of Forensics, identifies the most worthy scholarship applicants and announces award recipients in time for students to receive their scholarship funds in Spring.
The scholarship application for 2023-24 is now closed.