As a founding member of the debate team at my high school, I competed with no guidance from a coach or any school funding. All tournaments my partner and I competed at were paid for by us. Although we did well considering the steep learning curve we faced, I decided that no team should have to start out behind due to a lack of funds.
I created Open Access Debate after witnessing teams whose schools couldn’t afford briefs and expensive database subscriptions lose to those who had access to these materials. The large, well-coached teams reap enormous benefits from the expertise of their coaching staff in addition to research guidance. Hopefully this resource can be used by debaters all across the country to bridge the gap between large and small, funded and unfunded, and coached and uncoached.
I am attending Barnard College of Columbia University as a member of the class of 2021, where I am studying political science. I am an Assistant Debate Coach at Achievement First Brooklyn High School.