Ten teams from across Utah are expected to compete at the two-day event to be held at the Grand County High School, 608 South 400 East.
More than 200 students will be competing in debate and speech events. At least 30 judges are needed.
“You don’t need previous speech or debate experience,” said Kristin Millis, Grand County High School’s debate coach, said in a news release. “We will train you.”
Judges are needed from 3 to 8 p.m., Friday, Dec. 13 and from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 14.
First-time judges will be asked to attend a one-hour pre-tournament training the week before the competition. New judges can choose from trainings that will be held at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 8 and 7 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 12.
While judges are welcome to assist both days, it isn’t necessary, said Cassie Paup, one of the organizers of the event.
“You can judge for a four-hour shift, if you prefer,” she said.
Meals will be provided for judges.
Friday evening’s tournament competition will feature debate events, while Saturday’s activities will focus on individual speaking events.
Friday night debate events will include congress, public forum and Lincoln-Douglas.
In congressional debate, individual students debate bills and resolutions in a group setting, much like legislators, and competitors must be prepared to argue either side in the debate.
In public forum, two-person teams present persuasive arguments on predetermined topics chosen monthly by the National Forensic League.
The Lincoln-Douglas debate format is a one-on-one competition named for the 1858 presidential debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas.
The Saturday, Dec. 14 competition will feature individual events, such as oratory, impromptu, extemporaneous speaking, dramatic and humorous interpretation, poetry and prose.
“Judging these events will open your eyes to how bright and talented these students are,” Millis said.
The Grand County debate team is also seeking volunteers who are willing to assist with concessions, setup and cleanup.
“If you want to be involved, but would prefer not to judge, we have additional work that can be done,” Millis said. “We appreciate all efforts to support these students.”
To sign up as a judge or to volunteer in another area, contact Cassie Paup at firstname.lastname@example.org.