Groundbreaking Success at Yale for The King’s Debate Society
Josiah Peterson and Burk Ohbayashi Compete in Semifinals
NEW YORK, October 28, 2011—It is an honor and achievement for any debate program to advance debaters the final rounds of the Yale IV international debate tournament. Yet after just three years on the international debate stage, two debaters from The King’s Debate Society, Josiah Peterson and Burk Ohbayashi, outcompeted teams from Oxford, Stanford, Cornell, and Harvard to advance to the semifinal round.
Josiah Peterson (‘12) and Burk Ohbayashi (‘12) finished amongst the top 8 semi-finalists out of 160 teams this past weekend. Noah Heinz (’14) and Josh Craddock (’14) ended just a few points from short of breaking to outrounds. King's two novice teams, Chris Svendsen ('14) and Hector Sanchez ('14), and Hannah Rawls ('13) and Sean Spurlock ('14) finished 6th and 7th in the novice rankings.
Yale is the largest, most internationally competitive tournament in which The King’s Debate Society will compete this fall—three times the size of the most recent tournament at the University of Rochester. King’s students regularly faced teams from Oxford, Harvard, Stanford, and Cornell. “Where is King’s College?” asked a seasoned debater from an international university, shortly before being eliminated from competition by Ohbayashi and Peterson in the quarterfinal round.
The King’s Debate Society sent a record ten teams to Yale, of which seven students were novice debaters. Students debated topics such as insider trading, court-ordered assassinations, and racism in scientific research. Yale was freshman Christopher Svendsen’s first tournament. “It was a great learning experience and a lot of fun,” he said. “The team was really able to bond, and we were able to build great friendships.” King’s students enjoyed connecting with new and old acquaintances in between debate rounds. Many other schools expressed anticipation concerning the upcoming Empire Debates in January 2012, which will be the first debate tournament hosted by The King’s College.
Other King’s debaters were Charles Carman, Jacob Cooper, Hannah Herman, Jeremy Cerone, Tessa Carter, Anna Matthews, Greg DuBois, Elias Garvey, Karen Penica, John Sailer, Bethany Pickett, and Samuel Tran. Emily Deemer, Ray Davison, Sarah Hicks, and Coach Katie Teubl served as judges.
The next tournament King’s plans to attend will be the Huber Debates hosted at the University of Vermont in November. Thank you for the encouragement, prayers, and support that you, our community, have given us as we train students to advocate truth in the marketplace of ideas.
The King’s College educates students in the ideas upon which nations rise and fall. With a focused curriculum in the liberal arts tradition, students are prepared to help shape, and eventually to lead, the institutions of government, civil society, media, law, business, education, the arts, and the church. King’s is a Christian college located in the Empire State Building in New York City.
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