Many members of the Society are skilled orators and debaters – and if one wishes to cultivate these skills, the Jefferson Society is the place to do it. The Debate & Oratory Committee’s goal is to develop this forum for members of the Society through organising weekly content and various opportunities for members to grow in this skill-set.
In Fall 2018, we were fortunate to hear from a variety of both regular, probationary, and alumni members on a range of topics. One alumna, Ms. Colleen Murphy, offered a topical commentary on the Kavanaugh hearings that interested members of the public from outside of the Hall and allowed us to engage in discussion with the community. However, not all of our content is serious and no-one demonstrated this more so than Mr. Andy Chambers, who gave a humorous presentation on “the SOP” – his interpretation on the science of charisma.
We also participate and hold several intriguing events every semester, some of which are annual that we would love to see some new faces at next year! In the fall, we host the Harrison Cup, one of our debates against The Washington Society and were well-represented by members Cate Streissguth, Vilas Annavarapu, and Matthew Diasio on the resolution, “Take the risk or lose the chance.” This can be freely interpreted by the debaters and is renowned for being humorous! We also participate in the annual Fall Ethics debate, which is also against the Wash. Our members debated the much more serious resolution: “Developed countries have a moral obligation to accept migrants.”
The Debate and Oratory Committee is integral to honing public speaking abilities throughout the Hall. However, if debating is not your cup of tea – why not check out our Pen & Ink content? We have some incredible writers and performers in our midst!
If you have any interest in the debating side of the Jefferson Society, you can contact the committee chair here.