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Site Spotlight: SpeakFirst High School Debate Team

How many members are serving at this site? Four members are the main coaches for the team, while many other members assist with tutoring students, guest judging for tournaments, and providing college application and ACT prep assistance. What is your organizations goal at this site? SpeakFirst is a competitive debate team comprised of driven and academically motivated high school students from Birmingham-area schools, providing them with rigorous extracurricular academic opportunities. SpeakFirst uses academic debate as coached and facilitated by AmeriCorps members as a platform to support these students and guide them on a path toward excellence in college and beyond. What is something excited that has happened at this site?

Two juniors from the SpeakFirst team just qualified for the National Debate Tournament this June. Over the course of two days, the students competed in seven rounds of debate against teams from across the region, achieving a record of 6 wins and 1 loss and placing second overall in a field of 48 teams. Our AmeriCorps Members worked hard leading up to the tournament to help them prepare and coach them through the weekend.

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