The University of North Texas Debate Team is committed to excellence in public policy debate at the national and regional levels. An end-of-the-year performance report for Spring 2011 confirmed that the UNT Debate Team has made gains in both the district and overall rankings.
The Team started 2010 with no upperclassmen and little experience in collegiate debate and finished 13th in the 3rd District out of 16 schools and 38th out of 96 schools nationally. 2011 saw dramatic improvement as the Team finished 5th in the 3rd District moving up 8 spots and placing ahead of schools like the University of Texas, at Austin and at Dallas, Baylor, and Kansas State. Nationally, the Team finished 17th out of 90 schools, moving up 19 spots and putting us ahead of Wake Forest, The University of Michigan, Dartmouth and California-Berkeley to name a few. The team also earned the title of Junior Varsity National Champions in 2011. We take this data and are excited about how the young team continues to grow and have begun preparations for the 2011-2012 season and expect to continue our climb to the top.
Exciting news comes also from the Varsity Division where in 2010 we ranked 41st out of 96 schools. 2011 saw an improvement of 19 spots to move to 22nd ranked school in the Varsity Division, moving ahead of teams like Michigan State, Georgetown and the University of Southern California. This is exciting news because it shows that our top debaters are improving year-to-year. The team finished in the Varsity division with a top 8 showing at the Cross Examination Debate Association (CEDA) National Debate Tournament where more than 125 teams participated. We expect the next year to be even better!
We also want to recognize the success of the UNT Debate Team's Public Debate Project. Every year the UNT Debate Team looks for new and innovative ways to get students involved on campus. This year we moderated and/or participated in six public debates. Some of the topics included: British imperialism, immigration reform, Japanese re-armament, gun control, and the Student Government Association presidential debates.
This success would not be possible without the support and encouragement from the SGA and the UNT Communications Department. At UNT, the debate team is an integral part of the Department of Communication Studies, and the department chair, Dr. John (Jay) Allison, Jr. has been very supportive of our achievements and involvement with campus issues. A special thanks needs to go out to a few people: Dr. Brian Lain, the director of debate, for his support this season; Mr. Louie Petit, assistant director of debate, for his continued dedication to the team; Mr. Andy Casey, assistant debate coach, for his research and assistance throughout the season; Ms. Lauren Sabino, graduate teaching assistant, for her support, encouragement, and time this season; and Mr. Brett Farmer, graduate teaching assistant, for his support, encouragement, and time this season.