Boston Debate League

Volunteers make an Impact

December 16, 2021 | By Kelly Cody

A Special Thank You to Our Volunteers!

As the first half of the BDL 2021-2022 debate season comes to a close, let’s take a look at what a wonderful time our volunteers had while providing an invigorating platform for the youth voices of Boston!

This season kicked off our first in-person tournament after an 18 month virtual hiatus due to the COVID-19 virus. Enforcing social distancing, mask wearing, and COVID vaccine/test status checks, BDL provided a safe environment for students and volunteers alike.

BDL hosted 5 tournaments this past season: a summer camp tournament, 2 middle school tournaments, and 2 high school tournaments.

Two of the aforementioned tournaments were also a part of BDL’s Affinity Takeover series. BDL Takeover Tournaments highlight a different college experience, career field and offers, creating an opportunity for students to receive feedback from volunteer judges with specific and valuable expertise and to connect with community members whose career paths and life experiences help illuminate the important connections between debate and the world around them.

So far this season, BDL has hosted an Educator Tournament Takeover and a Legal Community Tournament Takeover, exposing students to the fields of education and law. Stay tuned for our Black and Latinx Professionals and HBCU & Divine 9 Takeovers approaching next year!

During tournaments, debaters have been supported by volunteers from many of our partner organizations: Boston Cares, South Asian Affinity Bar Association of Greater Boston, Boston Bar Association, Playworks, Massachusetts Black Lawyers Association, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, One Brick, Debate Spaces, and Northeastern University’s Service Learning.

Our FABULOUS volunteers facilitated 813 debate rounds and donated 1,578 hours – that’s a lot of debate! They provided the opportunity for 486 students to engage in analytic discourse and discover a joy in learning through debate rounds.

If it isn’t abundantly clear, none of these educational opportunities would be possible for students without our volunteers or partner organizations. Whether it be judging a round, assisting behind the scenes at tournaments, or simply sharing information about the BDL, our volunteers MAKE AN IMPACT!  A big THANK YOU to every volunteer who has joined us so far this season!

Want to be a part of our volunteer community? Check out our Volunteer Page.