Posted by Mary Wimberley on 2011-06-21


Samford University will host high school debaters from around the nation at its 37th annual Summer Debate Institute June 26 through July 9.

About 60 students will spend two weeks honing their skills in three debate styles: Lincoln-Douglas, public forum and policy. Participants represent novice, junior varsity and varsity experience levels. They hail from Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Missouri, Illinois and Kentucky.

Mornings will be spent in lectures that teach debate skills and concepts. Afternoons are devoted to individualized instruction and practice in lab groups. In the Lincoln-Douglas division, for instance, debaters will conduct research and attend lectures on such topics as case writing and how to cross-examine.

Even July 4 contains a full schedule of practice rounds that will lead to a tournament on the final two days of the institute.

The policy debate topic is “Resolved: the United States federal government should substantially increase its exploration and/or development of space beyond the earth’s mesosphere.” The Lincoln-Douglas debate topic is that free trade should be valued above protectionism.

The institute faculty consists of award-winning college and high school debate coaches, including Samford director of debate Dr. Ryan W. Galloway and debate coach Abi Williams.



Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.