"A good leader can engage in a debate frankly and thoroughly, knowing that at the end he and the other side must be closer, and thus emerge stronger. You don't have that idea when you are arrogant, superficial, and uninformed." - Nelson Mandela
The Lenoir-Rhyne University Debate Team travels to intercollegiate debate tournaments beginning in the fall of each academic year. The focus of the team is to build a deeper understanding of argumentation and advocacy through participation and practice in public and competitive debates. The team maintains an average of 14 members each year.
The Debate Team of Lenoir-Rhyne University has arguably become a contender to beat. In 2015, the team won their second consecutive national championship in just their second year of competition in nearly a quarter century. Students competed at the National Christian College Forensics Association National Championship held at Colorado Christian University in Lakewood, where team members Nicholas (Nick) Gibson and Luke Lynch became the Novice Parliamentary Debate Champions.
In its first year of returned competition, the team of Jake Fisher and Rebecca Payne were named Parliamentary Debate National Champions at the 2014 Novice National Championship Forensic Tournament in DeKalb, Illinois. The team’s immediate success has brought with it high expectations, but members continue to rise to the occasion and continued to excel.