Lincoln University Students Practice Debate Skills at Public Forum

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  • Category: Campus News

LINCOLN UNIVERSITY, Pa. – On a Wednesday night after most classes ended for the day, students, faculty, and staff came together to witness students debate students in a moderated forum outside the Thurgood Marshall Living Learning Center.


Students, faculty, and staff attend the tunnel debates at the Thurgood Marshall Living Learning Center on Oct. 25

Realizing the importance of having an open outlet for students to discuss pertinent public policy topics that affect their everyday lives, residence hall coordinator Curtis Reed reached out to various on campus student organizations to organize a public debate on two topics: gun control and the legalization of marijuana.

“In light of what’s happening in the country, I wanted to give students the opportunity to discuss their ideas in a structured and constructive environment,” said Reed.

Before the October 25 debate, participants such as members of the Thurgood Marshall Law Society were instructed to conduct research to support their stance on the issues so that they would be ready to discuss the intricacies of the topics in front of the approximately 80 attendees. Many of the attendees said afterward that the public debate concept was well received.

“I believe these debates allowed students to enhance their knowledge on subjects that affect their everyday lives,” said Burnell Barnes, a law society student who participated in the debate.

The debates were structured in a mildly modified form of the Lincoln-Douglas style where each debate lasted 30 minutes with 10 minutes allotted for questioning.

“It was well organized, and the turnout exceeded everyone’s expectations,” said Jordyn Adams, vice president of the Thurgood Marshall Law Society, “Students were able to get their ideas across in a productive and cooperative environment.”

Debate organizer Curtis Reed said he hopes to use the Thurgood Marshall Living Learning Center for more academic venues in the future.

Article by Devin Bonner, Office of Communications and Public Relations.