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The Monmouth University Debate Hawks received three awards at the James Madison University Tournament held October 12 to 14 in Harrisonburg, Virginia. The tournament included 160 debaters from 14 universities including Vanderbilt University, Wake Forest University, George Washington, the US Naval Academy, and George Mason University to name a few. Two MU Debate teams, Kelly Craig and Sam Maynard, and Mark Cosentino and Lianne Kulik, made it to the quarter final playoff rounds in the novice division. Kelly Craig also took a 4th place individual speaking award in a division that included over 80 individual debaters.

Two MU Debate Teams (Alexandria Todd and Dan Roman, Miriam Peguero and Andrew Bell) competed in the upper division, marking the first time Monmouth University has had two teams compete in this division that includes scholarship debaters. First time debaters Kate Nawoyski and Michelle Grushko, and Elizabeth Anderson and Dylan Maynard, also scored impressive victories at the tournament, falling just short of making it into the playoff rounds.

Each year, a topic is picked to be debated at every tournament. The topic for this year is Resolved: The United States Federal Government Should Substantially Reduce Restrictions on and/or Substantially Increase Financial Incentives for Energy Production in the United States of One or More of the Following: Coal, Crude Oil, Nuclear Power, Natural Gas, Solar Power, and Wind Power. The Debate Hawks researched and wrote a case on subsidizing nuclear power generated from thorium, rather than uranium. The team argued thorium has three advantages over uranium in that: 1) it cannot be weaponized; 2) doesn’t lead to meltdowns like at Chernobyl and Fukushima Japan; and 3) unlike uranium, throium is not mined on Native American lands. There are six preliminary rounds, each lasting approximately two hours. Each team argues on the affirmative in three rounds and on the negative for three rounds. Teams that compile a winning record in the preliminary rounds go on to the playoff rounds on Sunday.

The Debate Hawks would also like to thank former debaters Brandon Karkovice and Alexandria Matz for helping to coach the team this weekend.

For more information on the Debate Hawks, contact Professor Joseph Patten at (732) 263-5742.

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Media contact: Petra Ludwig at 732-263-5507