Archive for September, 2011

First South Coast Debate Workshop a success

Thanks so much to everyone who came to our workshop in Bandon on Saturday Sept. 24th!

As promised, here’s the evidence set available for download to your computer.

Forty people participated in our workshop, including parents, teachers and student from Marshfield and North Bend, Bandon, and Coquille. Bandon is new to the debate side of Forensics, and Coquille has a brand new team this year!

Students had discussions and debates about outer space, education, and the policy debate topic this year and shared their forensics experience with Rachel Mosley and Hank Fields of ODEF.

We covered the basics and many myths about policy debate. People contributed their thoughts about education, the US debt, Keynesian economics, Pakistan, and the space race. Who knew that high schoolers were so smart these days? Must be something in the water over there.

If you couldn’t make it, don’t worry! You’re still welcome to download the evidence set and join us at the first tournament on October 8th at North Bend High School. We’ll be having another free workshop in Coquille on December 10th for the next step or for new folks who are interested.

Bandon vs. North Bend

Coquille vs. Marshfield


South Coast Debate Summit

Are you interested in debate, public speaking, or performing?

Are you looking for an educational activity that looks great on college applications?

Do you want to share your opinions and make friends with people all over Oregon?


Don’t miss this once in a lifetime opportunity! The SOUTH COAST DEBATE SUMMIT is a free workshop that takes place all this year in schools on the Oregon coast.  The 2011 NATIONAL CHAMPION of college debate wants to teach you how to be the best debater you can! Come join us on September 24th from 1 to 4pm at Bandon High School in Bandon, OR!

– The University of Oregon’s Hank Fields won last year’s National Title in college debate. He’ll be leading three workshops on the south coast for any students who want to continue the incredible wealth of debate talent from Oregon!

SIGN UP TODAY to ensure your spot!

How to start a team – coaches

In a new page, our directors discuss how teachers, parents, or other potential coaches can start a debate team at your school. Be on the lookout for more “checklist” posts for students and fundraising!


1. Contact ODEF. Write us an email that says you’re interested. We can put you in contact with helpful mentors, interested community members and other useful people that will prevent you from making the same mistakes others have. We can discuss specific strategies and considerations for your school, coordinate schedules, and solve other major headaches before they arise.

2. Find interested students. You may think this is putting the cart before the horse, but every step afterward will be easier if you have the inertia to overcome bureaucracy that comes from having actual warm bodies on your team. There’s a couple ways to do this.

Giving a talk in a class or explaining the benefits of debate to as many students as possible. You can read our site here for some talking points. Here are a few that I’ve discovered that can really resonate with high schoolers. High School students are anxious – more anxious than ever – about college. Make sure to explain how debate can help you get into college, get scholarships for college, and give you skills to prepare for college. Additionally, do some work to overcome the myths about debate that deter lots of people: 1. it’s nerdy. 2. I’m shy so I have nothing to contribute. 3. I’m bad with words so there’s no way I can compete, etc, etc. If you’ve done debate, tell the story of your experiences.

Continue reading ‘How to start a team – coaches’