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Members of the Georgetown University School of Foreign Services debate team.
Doha: The Georgetown SFS-Q debate team members sharpened their skills in a four-round debate tournament with the Qatar Universities Debate League (QUDL).
Hosted in the Georgetown building, and amid mid-term pressure, five teams from SFS-Q participated in a full day competition with teams from the College of the North Atlantic, Qatar University, Stenden University and other Education City universities.
For the second time this year, SFS-Q students ranked first, this time outscoring Carnegie Mellon by just one point. SFS-Q students also ranked among the best speakers.
Yoonsuk Choi, an SFS-Q freshman, was selected as the tournament’s best speaker. Having debated in high school for three years, Choi was excited to join the debate club. “Debate is a comparison between logic and values and I like presenting that in speeches”, says Choi.
When asked about how he felt about his experience with the debate club, Choi responded with enthusiasm: “I love the debate club at Georgetown because everyone is so nice and there is more flexibility than I had debating in Korea”. Choi was not the only top ranking speaker; first-time debater, Iman Mohammed charmed the judges and secured third place.
“The experience was very interesting but also very nerve-racking,” says Mohammed. Despite the first-time jitters, Mohammed is pleased that she participated in the tournament: “I’m glad I did it. I never expected to do well!”
Not only did Georgetown boast the top team and top speaker, but they are also had five adjudicators who contributed to scoring throughout the tournament. Shadi Al Shebli, first-time adjudicator, expressed his enthusiasm for the art of debate by resolving to enter as a participant in the next QUDL tournament. “Adjudicating really helps one understand the logical sequence of dialogue and what makes for sound argumentation and persuasive style,” says Al Shebli.
The next QUDL tournament will be held in November and students remain enthusiastic. “We’ll win it again,” Choi says.