Seawolf debaters return from international championship

by Kathleen McCoy  |   

The Seawolf Debate Team just returned from the World Universities Debating Championships hosted Dec. 27, 2008 through Jan. 4, 2009 by the University of Cork in Ireland. With over 300 teams competing from more than 30 nations around the world, "Worlds" is the largest and most competitive international debating tournament held each year.

The Seawolf debaters --James Stinson, Michaela Hernandez, Ben Ferguson, Severin Randall, Colin Haughey and Sarah Carpenter -- faced stiff competition from the world's top universities, including England's Oxford and Cambridge and America's own Yale, Harvard and Princeton.

Over the course of nine preliminary rounds, UAA's teams squared off against others over motions such as "the West should recognize the independence of Abkhazia" and "this house would fire the senior managements of all corporations which receive government bailouts." All three UAA teams ended up with winning records but did not accumulate enough points to break the top 10 percent of teams and, therefore, advance to the elimination rounds; Oxford ended up winning the tournament.

The team returns to Anchorage to the start of the new semester and the Cabin Fever Debates, UAA's intramural debating tournament. The event, open to all UAA students, will run from the end of January until spring break, and will reward the top team with a $2,000 first prize. For more information, please visit the Cabin Fever Debates Web site or contact Steve Johnson at (907) 786-4391.

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