Wave of Generosity

Crowdfunding positions Big Red debaters for multiple events
Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Impact from Cornell Speech and Debate Society crowdfunding this fall will roll out for months through sponsorship of competitions and other events.

The debate program raised $26,170 — 104 percent of its $25,000 goal — through 176 individual contributions. The average contribution was nearly $150 per donor.

It ranked first across 17 crowd-funded Cornell programs in both the amount raised and the number of contributions.

Funds raised will pay for participation in these events next semester:


Tournament of Love – Annual policy debate competition offering multiple competitive divisions, matching regional rivals from West Point to Rochester.

Novice National Championship – Worlds Debate Novice National Championship showcases the best first-year debaters from around the country.

Cornell Inter-varsity – Worlds varsity-level competition for experienced students from around the region.
Spanish-language Cornell Inter-varsity – Worlds second-annual Spanish competition, featuring top native and Spanish-second-language speakers from universities around the U.S.


American Forensics Association District 7 Qualifier – Traditional forensics competition comes to Cornell for the first time in years and will feature the region’s best public speakers.

World Schools Debate Invitational – First competition of its kind on Cornell’s campus for high school students in the pre-eminent global debate format.

April – May

Class of 1894 Debates – Each year, Cornell students compete in a series of debates against one another to be crowned 1894 Champions, receiving modest prize money from the endowment; it was set up by the graduating class of 1894 to ensure that the Cornell campus maintained its rich tradition of critical thinking and free speech.

Annual debate awards banquet – Celebrates and recognizes work by students and coaches, and reunites generations of Cornell Speech & Debate Society members to honor the Alumni of the Year.