South debate takes on The Glenbrooks Tournament


Lila Harrigan, staff writer

Last weekend, South’s debate students hosted and competed at the 43rd edition of The Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament, a competition pitting South debaters against North debaters, Alyssa Corrigan, Social Studies Teacher, and Debate Director said. The tournament is the largest high school debate tournament in the nation, Corrigan said, and it helps fund the debate program.

“They work some ridiculous days to help the program because it is such a big fundraiser for us,” Corrigan said.

The only level that competed in the Glenbrooks was varsity, so novice debaters exclusively helped with managing the tournament, freshman debater Anu Khishore said. 

 “Novice debate doesn’t compete at the Glenbrooks, so we have a lot of different jobs,” Khishore said. “We have to set things up, help people find where they’re going, and keep everything running smoothly.”

During the tournament, debaters completed two days of preliminary rounds, where groups affirm or negate the same topic for seven rounds, senior Harlan Warnsman, Policy Debate President, explained. The National Speech and Debate Association chooses topics, Warnsman said. Groups with five wins in the preliminaries go on to the final elimination day, Warnsman said.  

“We’ve been researching, putting files together, and improving as a cohesive unit,” Warnsman said. “The team works separately in pairs to prepare for tournaments.”

High school students from all over the country traveled to the Glenbrooks, allowing debaters the opportunity to bond with other students with a similar interest in debate, Corrigan said.

“The stress kind of melts away once we start the tournament because people are so happy to be there,” Corrigan said. “They’re having a good time, and so while it’s stressful, it’s also very worth it as an experience.”