Spotlight: Debate Team

FullSizeRender (1)
Manual Debate Team at banquet

Where: Freshman Cafeteria

When: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2:30-4:00pm

Open to: All students. Our team always welcomes new members! If you missed our interest meetings at the beginning of the year and are still interested in joining our team, don’t worry. Just stop by one of our meetings and let us know you want to join!

The Manual Debate Team competes in both Public Forum (PF) and Lincoln-Douglas (LD) styles of debate at local, regional, and national levels. The club’s mission is to create discourse that educates, informs, and inspires. The debate team does not hold tryouts and is always looking for new members. Members are expected to come to at least half of our practices and put some work into debate outside of the school building. We also very strongly recommend that our debaters compete in at least one debate tournament per semester.

When asked why students should join the debate team, Carter Squires, Head Captain of Team, explains, “…because the skills from debate are hugely applicable to any and all other fields. Obviously public speaking is a necessary skill for anyone interested in something like business, law, politics, or journalism, but it’s also crucial for art and STEM jobs. Think about it this way: you could create the best, most revolutionary, most awe-inspiring work of art or technology in history. However, unless you can express that idea with excellent communication skills, the idea falls flat. The ability to think critically is also very important in all fields, and makes many of Manual’s demanding classes much easier.”

Over the next few months, novice debaters will be learning the fundamentals of debate—things like argument structures and logical fallacies—as well as lectures on the basics of things like economics, philosophy, history, and government/politics. Varsity debaters will be practicing their skills from previous years. All debaters will be improving their public speaking skills and competing at local and national debate tournaments. Carter continues, “This year, our team’s main goal is to include students who want to join debate in order to compete, as well as students who join debate simply to become better at research, critical thinking, and public speaking. We also have smaller goals, like continuing to annihilate our opponents in the traditional Manual fashion.”

Debate park
Manual Debate Team at end of year picnic at Warwick Park

Head Captain of Team/Captain of PF: Carter Squires
Captain of LD: Ria Jain
PF Leadership: Aman Mann, Brendon Bultman, and Ben Hanson
LD Leadership: Riti Pathak, Greg Schwartz, and David Yi
Fundraising Chair: Madhu Garimella
Teacher Sponsor: Mrs. Cooper