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Newsweek & NAUDL Partner on ‘Mightier’ Initiative

Promoting Civil Discourse for the Next Generation

Celebrating Newsweek’s Remarkable Year

December 31, 2023 – In his December retrospective, Newsweek President and CEO Dev Pragad graciously mentioned Newsweek’s “Mightier” partnership with NAUDL as a highlight for the publication. “Newsweek’s newly designed platform features uplifting and inspirational coverage of important issues. In partnership with the National Association for Urban Debate Leagues, Newsweek launched Mightier, a hub that showcases high school debaters as they master the skills necessary to sustain rigorous, respectful and honest give-and-take about things that matter. We’re proud to amplify the voices of these future leaders.”

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Iconic Media Brand Brings High School Debaters to World Trade Center Headquarters for Live Debate & Recording of Special Podcast Miniseries Kicks Off Launch of ‘Mightier’ Content Hub on

April 12, 2023 (Press Release) – With a commitment to constructive debate at the center of its mission, Newsweek, the iconic, 90-year-old news organization, today announced a comprehensive partnership with the National Association for Urban Debate Leagues (NAUDL) to foster civil discourse among today’s youth.

The joint initiative, called Mightier, will celebrate the adage “the pen is mightier than the sword,” beginning with a live debate on April 14 at Newsweek’s World Trade Center headquarters. In front of an audience of Newsweek journalists and executives, high school debaters from Washington, D.C., Denver and Silicon Valley will share their perspectives on a number of issues, including affirmative action, the use of artificial intelligence in the workplace, immigration and climate optimism. These students were selected because of their skill and participation in NAUDL’s signature public debate series, I RESOLVE.

In conjunction with the live event, the students will also appear on Newsweek’s popular podcast The Debate. Those special episodes will be featured on the new Mightier digital content hub, which will be dedicated to youth-led discourse on the most important subjects of the day.

“The National Association for Urban Debate Leagues’ I RESOLVE series offers a unique format that highlights the power of high school debate—and student voice—in addressing pressing policy issues before a public audience. Participating students have tested their well-researched solutions before panels of civic and community leaders who make these tough policy decisions and are thrilled to bring what they’ve learned to Newsweek’s national audience,” said Rhonda Haynes, the Executive Director of NAUDL.

Besides amplifying the young voices that are participating in the live event, the new Mightier hub will include:

• Videos that highlight the personal stories of the students taking part in the April 14 event
• A special six-episode podcast miniseries documenting those same students’ visit to New York City and the Newsweek headquarters
• Interviews with other students, from across the country, who participate in NAUDL’s program
• Written profiles of the educators, coaches and mentors who guide NAUDL students through debate
• News coverage of various NAUDL debates, events and developments throughout the calendar year

The Mightier content hub will launch on April 20 and be introduced to Newsweek’s audience of 50 million monthly unique viewers.

“At Newsweek, we believe that good-faith debate is in the public interest, and we welcome diverse views and voices to the search for common ground. That’s in our mission statement; it’s something we work to achieve every day,” said Newsweek Global Editor-in-Chief Nancy Cooper. “These high school students have demonstrated their passion for the exchange of ideas. They see—and remind us of—the power of debate, and the crucial role it plays in encouraging those around us to seek common ground. We’re delighted to partner with NAUDL to host a live debate here in our office and to amplify these students’ voices on our digital and podcast platforms with the new Mightier content hub. We can’t wait to meet these young leaders, and to introduce them—and other debaters in the NAUDL network—to Newsweek’s audience around the world.”

As part of the agreement between Newsweek and NAUDL, Newsweek will also offer opportunities for NAUDL to reach its readership for fundraising efforts.

“I am sure those that visit Mightier will find our debaters provide thorough and objective analysis, suggest practical solutions, and identify related impacts. They may still be in high school, but they are keen in their insights—giving me considerable hope in simply knowing that they are willing and more than capable of leading through one of the toughest societal challenges in modern times,” added Haynes. “Learning how to debate provides teens with confidence today and prepares them for success tomorrow. It is exciting to partner with Newsweek to ensure that a wider audience can listen to the next generation, while supporting their personal empowerment and civic engagement.”

About Newsweek
Newsweek is the modern global digital news organization built around the iconic, 90-year-old American magazine. Newsweek reaches 50 million people each month with its thought-provoking news, opinion, images, graphics and video delivered across a dozen print and digital platforms. Headquartered in New York City, Newsweek also publishes international editions in EMEA and Asia.

The I RESOLVE Public Debate Series was made possible by the support of generous members in the philanthropic community, with particular recognition to Event Sponsors Liz and Randal Sandler.

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