Debate team raising money to compete in national tournament - Chicago News and Weather | FOX 32 News

University Prep debate team raising money to compete in national tournament

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Seniors Rayvon Dean (L) and Brooke Kimbrough (R) Seniors Rayvon Dean (L) and Brooke Kimbrough (R)
(WJBK) -

Members of the debate team at University Prep High School, a charter school in Detroit aren't speaking gibberish - they're using a form of debate that called "Spreading" because it combines speed and reading. Seniors Brooke Kimbrough and Rayvon Dean have worked hard to get the team where it is today.

"We started together. I knew nothing together about policy debate and we've learned together, and they've just grown exponentially," says coach Sharon Hopkins.

Now, the school's debate team is Michigan's first urban debate team to qualify for the Tournament of Champions. Unfortunately, the cost is the only thing standing in their way.

"One tournament can be a thousand dollars, and that's just to go to the one, you know, debate tournament," says Dean. "There are schools where, they have a massive debate budget and they can travel 10 teams to one tournament."

And now they're asking the community to help them get to the championship and prove to the world what Detroit's young people are really capable of.

"I feel like debate is a way, specifically, for urban children to get into college," says Dean.

"When both of us go to a tournament people are like, 'So you guys are from Detroit? How is that?' And we're like, 'Okay, it is not what you think.' We are always saying that it's a great place. We are proof of that," says Kimbrough.

Click here if you would like to donate to the debate team at University Prep High School >>

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