Debate team brings tradition back to life

By Aileen Zitek

Marian is known for its many different extracurriculars. Marian adds to its list by creating a debate team. The last time Marian had a debate team was in the 80s. They even had national champion in 1980, Mary Ambrose. [See the archived story on Mary’s memories and the influence of high school debate in her life below this story.]

Debate team is a great fit for anyone who has an interest on debating topics, or anyone who loves to have discussions with opposing viewpoints. “I am somebody that likes to debate on different topics, and see all the different opinions on possible issues,” Jacquie Smith ‘20 said. 

Approximately 22 girls are on the debate team this year. The team is made up of girls from all different grades. The team’s moderator is Ms. Halli Tripe, who also moderates the speech team. “I am excited for this upcoming debate team. I did it in high school and college and previously coached one. I can’t wait to see what this year brings,” Tripe said. 

Loud and Proud. Sophie Clark ’20 prepares for her practice debate round. the students had a week-long debate summer camp at Marian, Aug. 6-10, to provide insight to the new team and program.

During each round, the students are first given a topic and have to argue why they disagree or agree with that certain topic. Then, there are competitions where they debate on the topics they were given with other schools. “I am most excited for the competitions this year, I think it will be fascinating to see and hear the opposing side to the arguments,” Sophie Clark ‘20 said. 

The debate team has been hard at work for their upcoming season as students are already clocking hours of practice before school starts. “We’ve done a week long debate camp here at Marian during this summer. Then we start practices in September, and our competitions start in November,” Ellie Kripal ‘21 said. 

Article contributed by Ms. Halli Tripe from her coaching resources at:

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The Network is the student newspaper of Marian High School, Nebraska's only Class A College-Preparatory School for young women.

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