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UCC debaters win at McGill

Upper Canada College students Matthew Wang and Julian Samek won the junior championship while Wang was also the top junior speaker at the McGill British Parliamentary High School Tournament in Montreal.

That’s quite an accomplishment since the competition, which was held from Oct. 24 to 26, is the largest of its kind in North America.

The tournament revolved around the resolution: “This house would stop all military, financial and supply aid to developing nations.”

UCC’s Logan Ye was part of a hybrid team with Dasha Metropolitansky from White Oaks Secondary School and made it to the final in the senior tournament, but didn’t win. Ye placed 10th among all senior speakers while his partner was ranked second as they debated this resolution: ‘This house would repatriate all artifacts held in museum collections to their country of origin.”

Here is a report from Matthew Wang, in his own words, about his experience:

When I was informed by my classmates that Montréal has more poutine than anything I could imagine, I was a little skeptical. Little did I know how wrong I was. UCC’s trip to Montreal for the McGill High School Debate Tournament was filled with fun, debate, and poutine.

We started out from Toronto at 6 a.m. but after a long train ride, we had the chance to eat poutine. Our stomachs needed to be full for a full debate tournament ahead, facing many tough opponents along our way. After the first two rounds, we ate some wonderful (not poutine) pizza and slept, anticipating a full 12-hour day of debating.

After some shenanigans against some of the top teams in the country, numerous UCC teams and some dynamic duos, Julian Samek and I were able to make it to the junior finals. After some extreme sass on my part and a level-headed, calm delivery from Julian, we took home the hardware, taking first place for junior teams and first for the junior speaker. Obviously, we celebrated with poutine. On the last day, with our thirst for poutine finally quenched, we exhaustedly headed home on the train.

Overall, the trip was great. We met a lot of new people, learned more about the French culture (really poutine) and had a great debate experience. McGill is definitely one of the highlights of this year!

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