UCD students Aodhán Peelo and Adam Stairs reached the quarterfinals of the World Universities Debating Championships in the Hague over the Christmas break. Representing the Law Society, the team placed as the 24th best team in the world after the first 9 rounds of the championship, earning them a place in a partial-octo final.
Beating some of the top seeds in the competition, the team progressed to an octo-final, and in turn to a quarter-final, where they faced off with Sydney University, Oxford University and Durham University on the motion that ‘This House Believes All Governments should designate and publicly announce a list of all financial institutions they would bail out in the event of a crisis’. On a 3-2 split of the five-person judging panel, the team unfortunately lost out on a place in the semi-finals to Sydney A, the eventual winners of the overall tournament.
Adam and Aodhán, along with the rest of the UCD delegation have been in training for months for the World Championships and have attended multiple competitions to prepare, including the prestigious Oxford and Cambridge Intervarstities.
“We’re still really excited.” said Aodhán. “Doing so well at Worlds is the result of years of work; not just ours but all of Lawsoc debating! The University, largely through the Societies Council and Officer has provided us with world class coaches and support through all of the preparation that was pivotal to this, and future success”
The World University Debating Championships has been an annual event since 1981. It is the largest debating competition and one of the largest international student events in the world. It was last held in UCD in 2006.
Debating training is held weekly, with a dedicated training stream for first-time debaters. Anyone who is interested in trying competitive debating can email firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact the L&H or LawSoc at www.ucdsocieties.com/societies.