What is Debate Club


Vice President Dominic Alvarez, President Maddie Strauss, and Secretary Annabelle Chaklos were elected at one of the first big meetings. Each of them have an important role which they live up to at each meeting. Maddie Strauss said “I love being President. Having leadership in a club I’m really passionate about is an honor. I love leading discussions and helping the club decide on what to debate next.”

Debate Club is a fun, “all are welcome”, stress-free introduction to examining and debating different perspectives on given prompts. The debate club is a diverse group of students who create well thought out discussions. A lot of people agree on certain things one day, and then some people have opposing opinions. Everyone is really respectful while also making the club fun and a bit of friendly competition. Sometimes the meetings are super quick and sometimes they go on for a bit. Debate club says they have a good time and encourages people interested to join.

Mr. Andrew Smink said “I like that the club allows students to speak to one another, especially those with differing viewpoints, in a mature and structured way. It’s a great place to be exposed to different ideas and even different ways of thinking.”

Maddie Strauss said “I joined debate club because I’m interested in political science as a career, and debates are a major part of that. I’m really passionate about current topics and issues in our country and around the world, so debate club was something I wanted to get involved in.”

Dominic Alvarez said “I joined debate club because I found the “debate idea” to be interesting. I like seeing the different topics discussed and debated throughout a meeting.”

A small election was run during one of the first few big meetings. Anyone could run for President, Vice President and secretary. Everyone voted for who they wanted to elect for each position. Maddie Strauss is President, Dominic Alvarez is Vice President and Annabelle Chaklos is secretary. Strauss said “I was so excited to be President. As President I try to plan all of the meetings where we decide what we want to discuss. I usually mention a few ideas and topics and eventually we all decide.” Alvarez said “As a Vice President I provide more services for the activities during meetings. I do enjoy being Vice President because I can help put more in the club.”

The Debate Club first started in 2007. Mr. Smink wasn’t the first advisor but he has been the advisor since about 2011 or 2012. Mr. Smink became the advisor when a very motivated group of students approached him and asked him to facilitate the club. The Debate club meets in Mr. Sminks room (204) on Thursdays after school. You can check out pictures from debate club on their Instagram that Maddie Strauss runs.