This weekend I had the opportunity to travel to Denver, Colorado for the United States Universities Debate Championship! This is the largest British Parliamentary debate tournament in the country with 212 teams competing to be the national champions.
On Thursday morning, the PLU Debate team woke hours before sunrise to travel to Sea-Tac Airport for our flight to Denver. Since it is still spring in the pacific northwest, the weather has been stormy and not very warm. When we walked out of the airport in Colorado, the weather was the exact opposite. The sun hit our faces with warmth that most of us hadn't felt
for weeks which started the weekend off great!
Once we got to our hotel, we saw debaters for other schools in and out of our region. Some of our favorite teams
are Northwest University, Seattle University, and Willamette University, so it was exciting to see friends. After we settled into our hotel room, we headed to the Dessert Bar of Denver for ice cream, cake & cookies as a reward for a day of traveling.
Friday was our day of exploring while two PLU teams competed in America's Cup, which is an opportunity for teams to be constructed of coaches, former debaters, and individuals from different schools. While the PLU teams were debating, my debate partner and I explored the city of Denver. We walked the city and stopped at the Colorado capital building, the Federal Reserve, and Leela's Kitchen (which has amazing ranch dressing!).
The tournament started on Saturday morning and went late into the night after the fourth round finished. We debated topics like the privacy rights of American citizens, the power of social movements, and basic living income.
The national tournament is a great opportunity to connect with teams across the country. In any given round, Matt and I were debating against teams from New York, Florida, and California in addition to many other states. This is exciting because each region of the United States has different debate norms and styles and interacting with them gives us the chance to evolve into better debaters.
USUDC was our last tournament of the year, and will be my last debate tournament of my undergraduate debate career. It was a great weekend of sun, debating and friendship among Lutes!