Debate Hawks Host Jersey Shore Invitational

From November 17-19, Monmouth Debate Hawks hosted the Jersey Shore Invitational. Teams from across the Northeast came to compete including: New School, Suffolk, New York University, the United States Military, Oakton, and Townson.

Monmouth Debate Hawks put up eight teams, each consisting of two debaters. Mark Bravaco and Lauren Laureano broke into playoff rounds with a 3-3 record and secured a quarterfinalist trophy as well as individual speaker awards, Laureano first place and Bravaco eighth. Both were first time debaters. On her performance, Laureano said, “I felt I did well but getting the first place speaker award was completely unexpected. I am incredibly grateful for the experience and for Dr. Patten who has believed in me throughout my time at Monmouth.” Debate duo Patrick Carbone and Michael Makfinsky also secured a quarter-finalist trophy as well as speaker awards, Carbone sixth and Makfinsky tenth. All four of these students are part of the Public Policy Debate (PS-104) class this Fall.

Other teams also scored impressive victories including James Bellinger and Veronica Belloso, Michelle Rymar and Sarah George, and Max Gregorian and Sofia Santiago, Jacky Bruno and Jackie Tamburrino. Belloso additionally received a second place speaker award.

On the topic of the tournament, debate co-captain Jocelyn Marsh said, “It was a fun opportunity to be able to host a debate tournament right here at Monmouth. It was great to see new debaters win awards and make it to the playoffs during their first ever tournament.”

Teams Julia Schaefer and Mariami Ramirez as well as Jocelyn Marsh and Alex Mykulyn competed in the JV division, both scoring impressive victories. Schaefer and Ramirez broke into the playoff rounds for the first time in recent Monmouth debate history.

When asked about their performance and the team, debate co-captain Ramirez credits her partner. She said, “Me and her were able to be the first JV team in Monmouth Debate history to make it to finals; a feat that would be impossible to achieve without her.”

Coach Dr. Joe Patten had this to say about the tournament and the season, “We’re really over the moon that MU has had over 30 students compete in debate tournaments so far this year. It’s also remarkable how many of our debaters are winning team and individual speaking awards this year. It’s also a source of pride to host a tournament and to show off our campus to debaters from NYU, West Point, and a number of other schools.”

The topic for this year’s debate season centers on restricting the U.S. nuclear arsenal through a no-first-use agreement, removing a leg of the nuclear triad, or total disarmament. Anyone interested in joining the debate team can contact Dr. Joe Patten via email or at his office in Bey Hall. All are welcome, no experience necessary.