I participated in the Inter House Debate Competition that was a part of the Literature and Humanities Fest. The topic of the debate was “Is competition necessary?” and our house had to speak AGAINST the topic.
I was confident of my public speaking and debating skills and the competition gave me the opportunity to hone them. However, was apprehensive of advocating for something that I myself am against, but then I decided to analyse the topic from an emotional perspective , which is new for me, because usually I rely on well, researched, logical points in debates. This shift in method gave me the opportunity to develop a new skill, which is persuasion using pathos. I was able to use the techniques of persuasion (fear, shock value) that we were taught in English class while I wrote the opening speech for the debate, and it made me glad that I was able to apply bookish knowledge to real life.
It was also a good experience to debate with a team, because usually when I go to MUNs, I am on my own. Debating collaboratively made me realize how different people are able to connect different real life situations and examples to a given topic which lead to to the understanding that different people have different ways of saying the same thing, and that all the ways are unique and correct.
I was also glad that the competition gave me a platform to speak up about something I feel strongly about; the stress and harm that competitive exams inflict on students. It good know that teachers were able to empathize with the stress that students undergo. I hope that my speech changes the way we are burdened with homework and test!
Overall, though the arguments that I made had a lot of room for improvement, I am happy with my participation and performance in the competition.