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2016 Urban debater of the year

Click here

 to view the bio's of the 2015 Urban Debater of the Year competition, as well as winner Leonard Irving-Thomas's acceptance speech.

Nomination Materials

Nomination Form

Waiver/Photo Release - Minor

Waiver/Photo Release - Adult

Nomination Criteria

The Urban Debater of the Year will be a debater who demonstrates commitment and dedication to debate; improvement in his or her performance, in debate and in school; academic excellence; and leadership in his or her school, urban debate league, and community.

To be eligible for nomination, the debater must be:
- A high school senior graduating between January-June 2016;
- An active competitor in their urban debate league this school year;
- An active competitor in their urban debate league last year; and
- A student with a minimum cumulative GPA of at least 2.0. 

Nomination Process

Anyone (coaches, parents, league staff, judges, students, etc.) may nominate a debater. An individual may nominate more than one debater. Nominations must be submitted by web form on the NAUDL website. All leagues are strongly encouraged to nominate at least one urban debater for this award.   

Nomination Deadline: October 16th at 5:00pm CST

All applications and supporting documents must be received by NAUDL no later than October 16, 2015 at 5:00pm Central Time.  

A completed nomination includes:
- A submitted online nomination from.
- Student responses to 4 short answer prompts.
- Information on debater's community, volunteer and work activities.
- A current photo of the debater, appropriate for publication (eg. head shot).  Professional photos are not required, but please provide a high quality photo of at least 100 kb. Tip: if you are using a phone to take the picture export the image from the phone as the full size.
- A waiver form signed by the students parent or guardian (PDFs are found at the top right of this page.) 

Nominator's Essay: Essay should be no more than 2 pages long (double spaced and 12-point type) explaining how the nominee has shown:
- Commitment and dedication to debate;
- Demonstrated improvement in his or her performance, in debate and in school.
- Academic excellence.
- Leadership in his or her school, urban debate league, and community. 

Semi-Finalists Process

Semi-finalists announced: No later than October 23rd

NAUDL will announce the names of up to 20 semifinalists no later than October 23rd. Semifinalists and Supplemental Materials

Semi-finalists Supplemental Materials Deadline: November 13th at 5:00pm CST.

Semifinalists will be asked submit the following supplemental materials via our web portal by by November 13:   
- A copy of the student’s most recent transcript. (This does not need to be a certified copy.)
- A video recording of a speaking sample, no more than 3 minutes long.  
- A one page essay.
- Confirmation that: (a) he or she will be graduating from high school in the spring of 2016; and (b) if selected as the Debater of the Year, the student will travel to the annual dinner in April, 2016 (at NAUDL’s expense) to accept the award in person at the annual dinner and will prepare and deliver a short acceptance speech. 

Details on Selection Process and Scholarship

A selection committee of NAUDL board members and supporters will review the nomination materials and supplemental materials for each debater and judge the debaters on the selection criteria. In addition, the committee will consider each debater's communication skills, as demonstrated by the personal video. The winner will also receive a $2,500 college scholarship. Runners up and finalists will also receive scholarships. NAUDL will feature all finalists in its annual dinner book, on its website and in other promotional materials. 

Presidential Scholars Partnership

This year, NAUDL is proud to serve as a partner nomination organization for the Presidential Scholars Program.  NAUDL will select up to 10 finalists for Urban Debater of the Year.  NAUDL will nominate each finalist who meets the eligibility criteria to be a U.S. Presidential Scholar.  Additional information on the program is available on their website.  Around 150 Presidential Scholars are selected each year and we are honored to have been chosen to participate in the nomination process.

Please email with any questions.



Surveillance Topic Core Files

Immigration Surveillance Affirmative
(119.08 KB) 
Immigration Surveillance Negative
(82.28 KB) 
End the War on Drugs Aff
(121.74 KB) 
End the War on Drugs Neg
(90.52 KB) 
NSA Affirmative (Novice)
(134.4 KB) 
NSA Negative (Novice)
(89.67 KB) 
NSA Affirmative
(168.64 KB) 
NSA Negative
(126.61 KB) 
Organized Crime Disadvantage
(109.14 KB) 
Terrorism Disadvantage
(82.11 KB) 
TPA Politics Disadvantage
(68.82 KB) 
Executive Order Counterplan
(81.1 KB) 
Surveillance Reform Kritik
(80.57 KB) 

Oceans Topic Core Files

Aquaculture Affirmative
(102.25 KB) 
Aquaculture Negative
(82.35 KB) 
Coral Reefs Affirmative
(163.01 KB) 
Coral Reefs Negative
(70.08 KB) 
Ocean Clean Up Affirmative
(76.86 KB) 
Ocean Clean Up Negative
(69.25 KB) 
Precautionary Principle Affirmative
(79.94 KB) 
Precautionary Principle Negative
(79.74 KB) 
Topicality File
(50.6 KB) 
Social Services Trade Off Disadvantage
(87.84 KB) 

Previous Years' Kits

2013-14 Core Files Zip
(2.97 MB) 
2012-13 Resolution: Funding Transportation Infrastructure - Novice
(1.6 MB) 
2012-13 Resolution: Funding Transportation Infrastructure - Experienced
(7.07 MB) 
2011-12 Resolution: Increasing exploration of space (Novice)
(1.33 MB) 
2011-12 Resolution: Increasing exploration of space (Experienced)
(3.08 MB) 
2010-11 Resolution: Reducing military presence (Zip)
(10.69 MB) 
2009-10 Resolution: Social services for persons living in poverty in the United States (Zip)
(4.36 MB) 
2008-09 Resolution: Alternative energy incentives (Zip)
(3.61 MB)