Mean Green Comet Debate Institute

Lincoln Douglas

What to Expect

At Mean Green Comet we believe that the strength of Lincoln Douglas debate is its unique focus on shaping the ethical beliefs of students. Our goal is to develop thinkers that are capable of tackling the challenges of the future through advocacy. This is a strength of the format, and a guiding principle for our curriculum.

We are invested in you, and that is how it should be. Many camps start with a goal for their students without ever asking what those students want in the first place. We will not do that. You set the goals, and we will find ways to help you achieve more than you even thought possible. MGC LD works with debaters in every step of their progress. We seek to hone the specific tangible skills that have demonstrated success in competition regardless of circuit and skill level. Our faculty aims to be a partner in your debate success.

No matter what your competitive goals are, we know how to get you there. We’ve done it all—UIL, TFA, UDL, NSDA, and TOC. We believe that all of these circuits provide students valuable opportunities, and we have assembled a staff that understands how to help you succeed at whichever tournaments you frequent.

Your days will be filled to the brim with opportunities to better yourself. Students will be assigned a lab based on skill level that will serve as their home base throughout camp. Labs will provide instruction based on the needs of their specific students; this allows our instruction to be targeted. We believe that students learn best in small groups where they can cultivate relationships with each other and their instructors so this will be an important part of your camp experience. Lab will be a time to discover new content and hone skills. While debate is more than a game, you can’t access its benefits without experience. To this end, students will be challenged daily with a variety of activities and drills that will put the emphasis on learning through doing.

Students will also have the opportunity to choose their own adventure through our elective paths. Electives give students the chance to select instruction based on their specific interests and/or seek extra help in areas that they identify as a weakness. Our instructors are more than happy to help students select their path, but ultimately the selections will be left in the hand of the learners. Electives group students based on interests rather than ability which allows new pathways for collaborative learning among our student body. Our goal is to offer a diversity of electives so that every student feels there are engaging ways for them to participate in every time slot.

Mean Green Comet takes a big tent approach to argumentation. We don’t believe there is a dogmatic right or wrong stance on what Lincoln-Douglas debate must look like. We will embrace a variety of argumentative approaches including philosophical and framework debate, policy arguments, and kritiks. Our goal is to enhance student’s existing skills and provide exposure to new ideas. Students will be encouraged and challenged to try new approaches. Knowing an argument is the best way to expose its weaknesses.

We will also provide students the opportunity to approach specific instructors with questions, drill requests, and additional help through office hours. Students are encouraged to interact with members of the staff that they might not have immediate access to as their lab leaders. We have assembled a staff with an incredible depth of knowledge, and we want to give you an opportunity to benefit from every one of their perspectives.

A lot of your most valuable experience comes through actually debating. We will offer frequent practice rounds so that students can practice their craft in an environment that most closely mirrors what they will experience throughout their competitive year. Our instructors will be able to provide specific tips and suggestions in the moment, and students will have the opportunity to immediately implement that feedback through redos and drills. In this way, the entire curriculum builds throughout the program so you leave as a much more well rounded and practiced debater than you were day one.

Director's Statement

Debate’s greatest gift and lesson should be the strength of community. Our camp will truly embrace this directive. In addition to honing their individual skills, we will encourage students to create relationships that will make debate a more friendly place for all of us. When students leave Mean Green Comet we hope that they will remain friends with their peers, continue the discussions we have cultivated over the summer with one another, feel that the adults they have interacted with in this space are allies they reach out to if they need them, and truly understand how to make debate more accessible to those that weren’t able to join us this summer. We love to win, but our lasting impact is the lessons we learn and the legacy we leave. Mean Green Comet seeks to create camp alumni who will leave a lasting impact on the debate communities they serve and participate in.

Divisions, Date and Pricing

Session Dates Residential
(Room and Meals)
(Meals Only)
2 week June 30 - July 14 $1750 $1200

Division Director

Eric Melin

Eric Melin

Mr. Melin is the Debate Coach at the new Coppell High School Ninth Grade Center. Prior to Coppell, Mr. Melin was at Law Magnet, Hockaday and Southlake Carroll Senior High School. Mr. Melin also assisted the Colleyville and Grapevine debate teams. He has a BA in psychology with a minor in social work, UT-Austin, 2002. He earned his teacher certification from UNT-Denton, 2008. During his time as a debate coach, Mr. Melin’s Lincoln Douglas debaters have been extremely successful. His students have won all of the local tournaments and have been in late elimination rounds at the national circuit tournaments and championships. Mr. Melin' students have regularly qualified for and enjoyed success at TFA State, The NSDA National Championship and The Tournament of Champions. He has coached extemporaneous and Policy Debate champions at TFA State and a Informative Speaking champion at UIL State. During his career as a competitor, he was one of the most dominant LD debaters on the national circuit, winning such tournaments as TFA State, Greenhill, and Colleyville; placing second at both the Big Bronx New York City Invitational and Bronx Round Robin; reaching semifinals at St. Mark’s; and participating in elimination rounds at Glenbrooks and Emory. His junior year he placed seventh at NFL Nationals. He twice qualified for the TOC reaching quarterfinals as a senior and earning a winning record as a junior.

Division Staff

Blake Andrews

Blake Andrews

Blake competed in LD Debate at Parish Episcopal in Dallas, Texas both on the local and national circuit. Blake was an out rounds competitor in LD at Stanford, Colleyville, TFA State, Alta, and Churchill. Blake has since graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a Bachelor's in Government and minor in Philosophy. Blake has coached debaters from Plano West, Prosper, and Southlake. Blake’s students have been in out rounds of Isidore Newman, Grapevine, the University of Texas at Austin, TFAState, St. Marks, and NSDA Nationals. Blake is passionate about exposing students to debate, helping students research arguments they are interested in, and postmodern philosophy. Blake judges regularly in the Dallas area and has made lifelong friends from his involvement in speech and debate. He is very excited to be working at Mean Green Comet Debate Camp for the first time this summer!

Kayta Ehresman

Kayta Ehresman

Katya Ehresman is a rising Junior government and public policy major at the University of Texas at Austin. As a student, Katya competed at Lake Travis high school in Austin, Tx reaching elimination rounds at almost every national tournament she attended, most notably winning the Hockaday Women’s round robin and Churchill classic. As a coach, Katya mostly coaches students who specialize in identity politics, performance, stock debate and Topicality. Her students have bid at Millard North, Churchill and reached elimination rounds at all tournaments ranging from Harvard, TFA or UIL state. Katya also attended this camp 4 years ago as a camper and looks forward to celebrating her 4th straight year at the Mean Green Comet!

Abby Grifno

Abby Grifno

Currently a sophomore at American University pursuing a double major in international studies and economics. She debated for Westwood High School in Austin, Texas for four years and competed in extemp, policy debate, and world schools. She competed nationally and regionally in Lincoln Douglas, earning speaker awards and breaking at tournaments such as St. Marks, Emory, TFA State, the Hockaday Women's Round Robin, and others. She specializes in policy arguments and K literature related to feminism and capitalism. Now in D.C., she is regularly hired by tournaments and schools to judge policy, LD, and PF debate. She also competes collegiately in Model United Nations and writes for an undergraduate magazine on global economic issues. Abby has attended Mean Green Comet as both a debater and instructor and is excited to be back.

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.