Mean Green Comet Debate Institute

Congressional Debate

What to Expect

Students will be immersed in a collaborative environment that explores both the competitive and real-world values of Congressional Debate. In addition to learning to evaluate and write their own legislation, students will leave camp with the requisite resources to debate the TFA Fall Docket. Students will be challenged to speak and debate daily with one-on-one sessions with faculty, mock sessions, research pods, and peer-to-peer work. Students will learn how to access their own school’s resources and research effectively while having access to UNT and UTD’s expansive libraries to assist them.

Lectures – Expect up to two lectures a day with the first focusing on mechanics and skills with the second focusing on targeted topics. This structure will allow students to build on skills while gaining knowledge on both the fall docket and the broader world of potential topics (designed to equip students for “circuit” dockets).

Research Pods – Students will be on a rotating research schedule designed to equip them with a foundational/operational knowledge of each piece of legislation on the fall docket. This evening session will be designated for research and case construction.

Daily Debates – Students should expect a daily exposure to debate. Rounds will be divided between general sessions and practicum-oriented sessions. This will be an opportunity to hone argumentation and practice skills.

Office Hours – These will be offered every evening alongside Research Pods and will allow students who need more guidance to obtain it from all of the lab leaders.

Critical Takeaways:

  1. Argument Construction & Deconstruction
  2. Research Skills & Packet for the Fall TFA Docket
  3. Dynamic Public Speaking Skills & Drills
  4. Parliamentary Procedure – Leave a Presiding Officer
  5. Unique Legislation (for submission at “circuit” tournaments)

Sample Schedule

Morning Session 1: Theory Lecture, “Congressional Calculus: Understanding In-round Mechanics”

Morning Session 2: Workshop, “Parli Pro: Pushing Limits and Sustaining Debate”

Afternoon Session 1: Topic Lecture, “The United States Constitution in action”

Afternoon Session 2: Daily Debate, “Practicum – Direct Questioning”

Evening Session: Research Pods & Office Hours

Director's Statement

Congressional debate mimics real life and equips students to think critically, research thoroughly, and work collaboratively. I truly believe congress bridges the competitive genres of interpretation, limited preparation, oration, and debate. Students are challenged to role play, think on their feet, speak clearly and concisely, and engage in substantive debate. The goal of the MGCDI Congress lab is to develop students, at any level, to be stronger thinkers, researchers, debaters, and speakers. By focusing on foundational skills and advanced strategies, this program is equipped to benefit any student looking to reach the next level.

I invite you to join us this summer and rethink the way you debate.

Divisions, Date and Pricing

Session Dates Residential
(Room and Meals)
(Meals Only)
Congressional Debate June 28 – July 8 $1650 $1100
Congress & Extemp June 28 – July 15 $2150 $1500

Division Director

Terrick Brown

Terrick Brown

Director of Forensics, Seven Lakes High School

A two-diamond coach with 14 years of coaching experience. Competitively, he has coached students at every level: elementary school, middle school, high school, and college. Currently, Terrick serves as the Director of Forensics at Seven Lakes High School, where his team consistently ranks among the top 10 schools at the TFA state tournament. In the last three years, the Congress team has earned a total of 30 state qualifications to the TFA state tournament, with several students reaching the final round. Moreover, he has coached Congress and Speech finalists at Harvard, Emory, The Sunvitational, University of Texas, George Mason, Montgomery Bell Academy, and NSDA Nationals.

Terrick was also involved in the production of the film, The Great Debaters (2007), serving on the team of coaches that prepared Denzel Washington and the cast for their roles. He is a firm believer that all students have great potential, and they require encouragement and nourishment for their potential to materialize. He has experienced the transformative impact speech and debate has had on his life, and it is his desire to use this activity as a tool to equip young people with the skills to be productive citizens.

Division Staff

Mishan Kara

Mishan Kara

Congressional Debate Captain, Plano West High School

Mishan recently graduated from Plano West Senior High School where she was the Congress Captain both years. She has been competing in Speech and Debate for the past seven years and in Congressional Debate since her freshman year. Throughout her four years in high school, Mishan has competed at the local, state, and national level. She has won numerous local tournaments in Congress, qualified for the Tournament of Champions and Nationals in Congress, semifinaled twice at the Harvard Tournament, placed 8th at the Glenbrooks National Tournament, 4th at the TFA State Tournament, and championed the UIL State Tournament. In her free time for her Debate team, she has coached at the local middle and junior high schools. She is excited to teach skills, such as research, refutation, and speaking at Mean Green!

Nicolas Teachenor

Nicolas Teachenor

An incoming sophomore at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas currently getting a degree in International Studies and Economics. In his career, he finished 9th at NSDA Nationals and 6th at UIL Texas State. In addition, he has been the two time 3rd place finisher at both Grapevine and University of Texas Tournaments. He has also been a two-time TOC semifinalist and Harvard Semi Finalist. Notably, he has been ranked as high as 6th in the nation in Extemporaneous and 3rd in Congressional Debate. In the last year he has private coach people of all skill levels including a state champion.

Enroll Now

Click Here to Enroll

MGCDI enrollment is open! Follow the link above to Market Place and reserve your spot in our 2020 summer program. The final deadline for all registration is June 8, 2020.