Debate team prepares for upcoming season

Senior+captain+Kyra+Kellogg%2C+senior+Tommy+White%2C+and+junior+Ava+Roots+are+in+a+debate+team+meeting.+They+are+listening+to+coach+Corey+Quick+discuss+the+topic+for+the+first+three+tournaments.+

Photo by Ava Stein

Senior captain Kyra Kellogg, senior Tommy White, and junior Ava Roots are in a debate team meeting. They are listening to coach Corey Quick discuss the topic for the first three tournaments.

Ava Stein, Graphics and Online Editor

“We’re outside of the virtual environment. We had a ton of new novice debaters show up,” debate coach Corey Quick said.

While helping the novices get into the swing of things, returning members of the debate team were working hard to prepare for this season while adjusting back to the in-person environment. Members were excited to collaborate not only as a team, but in pairs too.

The first topic up for debate is, “The U.S. Constitution should be amended to limit the term of future Supreme Court Justices to 18 years.”

Members were eager to learn as much as they can about the first topic, keeping in mind the importance of it in U.S. politics. They will compete in three online tournaments on this topic before they move on to the next topic.

This is a topic senior captain Gursimrat Dahry said “both sides can see equal arguments on and you can find really good evidence for. . .  this particular topic on the Supreme Court, this debate continues to politically relevant in today’s nation and is essential for our generation, Gen Z, to learn more about.”

After coming off of a difficult year, the debate team saw a renewed interest in the activity. The large novice group had many members from all grades. Returning members and captains were very excited to work with the new students.

“I’m going to say I’m just very grateful. There are so many people here. I think a lot of people were reluctant to join last year just because everything was online. We were practicing online, tournaments were online. It was hard to actually develop a team. This year we have an opportunity to do that in person,” senior team captain Kellogg said.

I’m going to say I’m just very grateful. There are so many people here.”

— Kyra Kellog

Debate members were working diligently, hoping to succeed this season. They prepared their individual, partner and team cases. Returning members helped the novices by contributing to their cases and answered any questions they had.

“As a team, I’m researching all I can and taking down filing evidence cards, so that we, you know, have those citations to use in rounds. And on my own, I’ve been writing my case so I actually have something to say in rounds,” sophomore Soren Peterson said.

Working in pairs was one of the many benefits of debate. Members could collaborate one on one with each other, getting to know their partner well. Members not only had the support of a whole team, but someone individually to trust and rely on.

“You have someone to bounce ideas off of, someone to support you. . . it’s just fun to kind of have two minds working opposed to one and it’s kind of amazing how much more stuff you can come up with when it’s two people,” senior Tommy White said.

Dahry and Kellogg spilt the responsibility of being debate captains to lighten the load on both ends. With the support of Quick and coach Laura Hammond, they were able to lead the team’s research and help members through challenges. Their experience of being captains in the previous season will help them lead a successful team this season.

“Kyra and I are really good at different things. I would say she is definitely more of the social person and handles a lot of the team events. Also, stuff with the novices or the new people who are interested in debate. I usually work more with the returners or, at least last year, that’s how the responsibility was spilt but were pretty flexible with that. We don’t really allocate stuff,” Dahry said.

“I think it’s going to be a great season and I’m really looking forward to it and we’ll keep posting how we do,” Quick concluded.