The Power of Debate: Saudi Arabian National Debates (SAND) Inspires Youth Discourse

Apr 28 2024


The Power of Debate: Saudi Arabian National Debates (SAND) Inspires Youth Discourse

On April 26, 2024, the American School Dhahran (ASD) proudly hosted the inaugural Saudi Arabian National Debates (SAND), supported by ISG Superintendent Dr. Michael Mack and ASD Principal Ronnie Caldwell. The event brought together schools and youth debate clubs from across the kingdom, including Saudi Debaters.

After seven rounds of  intense and spirited debate, the ASD 1 team claimed first place and the ISG Dammam 2 team won second place. Team ASD 3 and Saudi Debaters 1 earned third place and honorable mention respectively.

Reflecting on the event, an ASD 1 winning team members expressed their pride and joy, stating:

“More than I am proud, I’m rejoicing in the overall outcome of the Saudi Arabian National Debates (SAND). Most of all, I’m proud of all the debaters, moderators, timers and judges who fostered a fair academic environment to bring about such enriching dialogue.”

Debate club executives further emphasized the significance of the event, noting, “We are proud that SAND had a positive impact on the broader community by providing a platform for young debaters to hone their discourse skills and explore pertinent affairs.”

The success of SAND was made possible by the generous support of Malabar Gold Diamonds and dedicated ASD staff members. Prize distribution was facilitated by ISG Assistant Superintendent Jana Barnhouse and ASD Principal Ronnie Caldwell, with evaluation and judging conducted by Toastmasters fraternity members.

With Saudi youth engaging in debate and dialogue and a nation committed to investing in its future leaders, initiatives like SAND play a crucial role in paving the way for a bright future. In the words of Sand Chairperson Shaila Koya: “Fighting with finesse is the essence of fine debating. It’s the best learning for the future. We hope to expand the program further next year by involving more schools from the central and western provinces.”

More information on SAND is available on the website.