Debate team wins back-to-back titles

Junior Jack Manchester and freshman Adam Tomasi represented the Wake Forest Debate Team at the ACC Debate Championship.

The debate was held at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on April 15-17, and Manchester and Tomasi earned the university its second championship in a row.

They were undefeated in competition this year. This win follows a win by debaters junior Corrine Sugino and sophomore Charles Athanasopoulos at a large debate tournament at the University of Texas. The Wake Forest Debate team is supervised by Jarrod Atchison, assistant professor in the department of communication.

“What makes winning a debate competition so difficult is that every opponent presents unique challenges, and you must be prepared to debate up to 13 opponents in one weekend,” Atchison said. “Unlike basketball or football where you prepare for one opponent per event, college debate requires you to face eight different opponents in preliminary debates and then five different opponents on elimination day.”

This year’s debate topic was “Resolved: That the United States should adopt substantially stricter gun control regulations, including a prohibition on carrying firearms at college and university campuses.” Manchester and Tomasi went the entire season undefeated and beat the University of Miami in the final round.

Also representing the university were graduate students Sammi Rippetoe and Eli Smith, who last competed in the quarter finals in Washington, D.C.

“[Debate] is one of the, if not the, most impressive academic achievements possible for an undergraduate to match wits with the best and brightest from across the nation for hours on end,” Atchison said.