Manual’s Speech and Debate team competes in November Wilson Wyatt debate competition


Public Forum partners Prisha Tyagi and Victoria Fu prepare to compete in the tournament, Photo by Prisha Tyagi

Guest Contributor

This piece was submitted by Savannah Smithson (10, J&C).

Manual’s Speech and Debate team competed in the Wilson Wyatt Debate League where two Congress members, Grace Fridy (9, J&C),and Lauren Wood (11, HSU),  two varsity Lincoln Douglas members, Sindhu Maringanti (10, MST) and Alex Englund (11, HSU), and one varsity Public Forum member, Victoria Fu (9, MST), placed top ten on Saturday, November 20, 2021. 

The tournament was held virtually this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, but the students still adhered to regular debate protocols, even while virtual. 

“I think I got burnt out on virtual tournaments, and even though this was virtual, I feel like I can kinda see the light, and that there will be in person tournaments soon,” Wood said.

Generally, the Wilson Wyatt Debate Tournaments are organized with three separate portions; Congress, Lincoln Douglas and Public Forum debate styles.

In the Congress debate, the members were given a legislative packet in advance and it’s these bills like you would see in Congress.

“The prep is looking into each of these bills, and getting really knowledgeable about all the topics,” said Wood.  

In the Lincoln Douglas debate, debaters are given a resolution before the tournament starts and they write affirmations about the resolution they are given.

“The prep is really whatever you want it to be. You can have notes next to you with points you want to walk about, but the general idea is you trying to gain a lot of knowledge about the topic,” Englund said.

The Public Forum debate is very similar to the Lincoln Douglas debate style; students  were given a resolution before the tournament and had to develop their argument and try to prepare for arguments that they might have ended up seeing and figure out a way to respond to those arguments. 

The Speech and Debate teams next tournament is Princeton’s National Event which will be held virtually on December 3.