UBC Reports
November 28, 1996

Debaters set sights on world championships

The UBC Debate Society will compete against teams representing universities from around the world including Oxford, Cambridge, Yale and Harvard at this year's World Debating Championships in Cape Town, South Africa.

As the current western debating champions, the UBC team will represent all of Western Canada at the six-day event taking place Dec. 28 to Jan. 3 at the University of Cape Town.

All debaters will participate in nine preliminary debates and three speech competitions. On New Year's Eve, the top 32 competitors will advance to the finals and compete in the elimination rounds.

Members of the UBC Debate Society world team are Christopher Moreno, a master's student in Applied Ethics who is Western Canada's top-ranked active debater and winner of the 1995 Yale Public Speaking Contest; and third-year law student Justine Wiltshire, a semi-finalist at Oxford's Debater of the Year competition.

Combined, Moreno and Wiltshire have 11 years of debate experience, more than 20 awards at the regional, national and international levels and three appearances at previous world competitions.

"Competitive debate is an activity which encourages the interdisciplinary application of knowledge, strong research skills, effective public speaking and incisive critical thinking," said Law Prof. Donald McDougall.

"It is hard to overestimate the value of exchanging ideas. Events like this shape the minds of our future leaders. The team representing our university and province will be ambassadors to fellow competitors and judges from five continents."

The Faculty of Law and the Office of the Vice-president, Academic and Provost, have made financial pledges toward sending the team to South Africa, but sponsors are still needed.

For information on how you can help, call (604) 221-2775 or (604) 730-8132.