High School Debaters Meet at CBU for City Championship

Memphis — Christian Brothers University (CBU) will be the site of the Memphis Urban Debate League’s City Championship Tournament Friday and Saturday, March 12-13, 2010. This year’s national high school policy debate topic is: “Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase social services for persons living in poverty in the United States.”

“I am very pleased that the Memphis Urban Debate League will be on our campus this weekend and very proud for Christian Brothers University and the School of Arts to sponsor this very special event.” said Dr. Marius Carriere, dean of the School of Arts at CBU.

Absent from Memphis City Schools (MCS) for almost 40 years, competitive policy debate returned in 2008 with the formation of the Memphis Urban Debate League (UDL). Debate teams from 17 Memphis City high schools have competed in five tournaments held throughout the school year. This second season culminates with the City Championship Tournament.

The City Championship Tournament begins Friday morning and will continue through Saturday evening. Following the preliminary and elimination rounds, the Championship Debate will occur on Saturday evening at 4:15 p.m. in Buckman Hall. Dr. Karl Leib, associate professor of history and political science at CBU, will present the championship awards.

“The National Association for Urban Debate Leagues (NAUDL) and the Memphis Urban Debate League Advisory Board are proud to support Memphis City Schools in this initiative.  This fruitful partnership brings life-changing personal growth to the young people of Memphis,” said Jim Sdoia, president of the Memphis UDL Advisory Board.

The NAUDL will award the final two teams and coaches in the Championship debate with an all-expenses paid trip to New York City in late April to compete in the Chase Urban Debate National Championship.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank the McMullen Family, Christian Brothers University and all our individual donors for their generous support in helping this program expand in its second year,” said Sarah Wandrey, executive director of the Memphis Urban Debate League.

All debate rounds are open to the public. The public should stop by the judges’ table in Buckman Hall to locate the debate they would like to observe.

Participating MCS high schools include Carver, Craigmont, East, Frayser, Kingsbury, Memphis Health Careers Academy, Manassas, Middle College, Northside, Oakhaven, Overton, Raleigh-Egypt, Ridgeway, Trezevant, Westwood, Whitehaven, and Wooddale.

The Memphis Urban Debate League is administered by a public-private partnership between the Memphis City Schools and an outside group of civic leaders comprising the Memphis Urban Debate League Advisory Board. Memphis City Schools houses the League and pays for core programming costs. For more information visit www.memphisdebate.org or contact James Sdoia, president of the Memphis Urban Debate League Advisory Board at (901) 604-5644 or jim.sdoia@memphisdebate.org. Or contact executive director Sarah Wandrey at (901) 277-5627 or sarah.wandrey@memphisdebate.org. ###

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