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About Our Outreach Program

More than a competitive speech and debate program, Cornell Speech & Debate Society staff and members are committed to spreading the importance of public speaking, advocacy and debate to encourage a more civil and engaged society.

In collaboration with numerous educational and community organizations, staff and members engage in programming to affirm that we believe everyone can benefit from learning and building a foundation of advocacy, debate, persuasive communication, and public speaking skills. Projects include (or have included): teaching debate to college students in South Africa, coaching local high school students through the Ithaca Teen Day Program, coaching middle school girls in debate and public speaking in India, working with regional incarceration centers to teach youth and adults, supporting the efforts of the International Association for Senior Debate and more.

Interested in learning about speech and debate from our team?

Middle and High School students are invited to apply for our International Speech and Debate Camp held on the beautiful Cornell University campus each summer. 

Recent and Ongoing Initiatives

Cornell's International Debate Camp will take place during late July and early August 2024. This is available to middle school and high school students.

Last summer, Cornell Speech and Debate staff and undergraduates worked with Upward Bound, an Ithaca summer program that works with low income families to increase the rate at which students enroll in secondary education. For one week of the program, CSD offered afternoon lectures and workshops teaching the students public speaking and argumentation, culminating in a group-wide debate.

The Cornell Spanish Debate Team celebrated Hispanic History Month by hosting a live, virtual debate in collaboration with USAID. Four Cornell students debated in Spanish the motion, "Should we prioritize vocational education over higher education?" 

Questions? Interested in Collaborating? Email us at

Students listen to lecturer Sam Nelson, while one student raises their hand

History of Outreach Initiatives

Cornell undergraduates tutored adolescent debaters in partnership with Dialogy, our partner company in China through much of 2021.

In 2021, CSD also designed a program of public-forum style debates among Senior Citizens over videoconferencing (zoom) or in public library settings. 

Cornell Speech and Debate has worked across the globe with students and communities of all ages teaching argumentation, persuasion, public speaking, and debate styles. 

Questions? Interested in Collaborating? Email us at