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The Debate Hawks

Debate Hawks Win Individual and Team Awards in Hybrid Tournament

The Monmouth University debate team placed first overall, finished with two team co-champions, and had multiple members receive individual awards in a hybrid tournament hosted by Missouri State University held Sept. 22-24.

This year’s American Debate Association topic is: “Resolved: The United States should restrict its nuclear forces in one or more of the following ways: adopting a nuclear no-first-use policy; eliminating one or more of the legs of its nuclear triad; and disarming its nuclear forces.”

Monmouth won the team tournament championship over the University of Northern Iowa with a 3-0 vote, while the debate teams of Veronica Belloso and Isabella Jennison, and Jacqueline Tamburrino and Camryn Toth were named co-champions of the tournament after both teams advanced to the final round. Teams from the same university do not debate each other when paired in a playoff round, leading to both Debate Hawk teams sharing the title.

Tamburrino won the top speaking award and Toth (third), Michael Makfinsky (sixth), Michelle Rymar (seventh), Patrick Carbone (eighth), and Belloso (10th) also won speaking awards.

The teams of Rymar and Carbone, and Paris Galgano and Makfinsky also made it into the playoff rounds. Matt Boyle and Sarina Dadoun, and the upper-division team of Mariami Ramirez Tsuladze (co-captain) and Julia Schaefer also had impressive victories.

Monmouth competed in the event over Zoom against debaters from seven colleges, including the University of Houston, Missouri State, University of Oklahoma, Johnson Community College, Wichita State University, University of Texas-San Antonio, and Northern Iowa.

Professor Joe Patten expressed his thanks to Adjunct Professor Sam Maynard for his assistance in coaching and judging the tournament, and to team captains Jocelyn Marsh, Alex Mykulyn, and Ramirez Tsuladze for organizing evidence and leading debate scrimmages in preparation for the tournament.

The Debate Hawks will be in person for the next tournament at the University of Houston from Oct. 13-14.

Students who are interested in learning more about the debate team should contact Patten at No experience is necessary to join.