Students used rhetoric, wit and delivery in a public speaking contest Tuesday that included the best orators from the department of communications.

The 2014 Wolfpack Speaks competition featured students from the COM 301 Advanced Presentational Speaking class.

Amanda Renfroe, a senior in public and interpersonal communication, won the competition.

Renfroe’s speech was titled “Nasser’s Story: Addressing Homelessness and Poverty at NCSU” and focused on the issue of homelessness.

“The main point I am trying to get across is that homelessness and poverty exists in colleges and universities,” Renfroe said. “These are issues we can help solve and that we have the resources to solve.”

Renfroe also discussed the importance of public speaking in general.

“I think it’s important to be able to be articulate and confident and be able to express your ideas and persuade people when you need to,” Renfroe said.

The runner-up was Lauren Coats, a freshman in communication media. Her speech, titled “Same-Sex Marriage in North Carolina,” discussed the importance of accepting same-sex marriage.

The second runner-up was Rachael James-Beverly, a sophomore in political science and communication. Her presentation was about the significance of voting rights in North Carolina.

Beverly Benitez, a senior in public and interpersonal communication, won fourth place with her presentation about sex trafficking titled, “Remembering Hope”.

Fifth and sixth place were held respectively by David Thompson, a junior double majoring in business administration and communication, and Robin Collis, a senior in public and interpersonal communication. Thompson spoke about the importance of critical thinking. Collis presented his views for the argument on whether or not believing in God is rational.

Elizabeth Nelson, a director in the communication department, led the event and discussed how this event highlighted the importance of public speaking.

“One of the things that was nice was that people got to talk about things that are important to them, and that’s what we want to be doing,” Nelson said. “We want to make sure that as a college community we are constantly communicating with each other about what is important.”

Wolfpack Speaks is meant to push students to do rigorous research, apply high-quality writing and have excellent delivery throughout their public speaking aspirations, according to Nelson.

“This competition is meant to showcase public speaking,” Nelson said. “It’s meant in part to showcase all of the hard work that goes on in this department. A lot of majors require public speaking, so this is an opportunity to see how it works at a higher level, and also to communicate the message that people wanted to share.”

The competition, presented by the Department of Communication, took place in Williams Hall auditorium.