Stanford Invitational Tournament

Thanks for joining us this summer!  Please return to our website later this fall to see the dates of our 2018 programs.  We expect to have dates posted and camp enrollment for summer 2018 open by December 1st.

Parliamentary Debate

At SNFI we believe that there isn't a single "correct" way to do parliamentary debate, but rather that in order to succeed at the national level in both high school and college, parliamentary debaters need a well-rounded set of skills and the ability to borrow from numerous regional styles.  That belief is embodied in the staff we've assembled--at SNFI you'll work with some of the best minds in each parliamentary format!

 
If you want an opportunity to learn all manners of arguments and debating cultures, parliamentary debate is the format for you! Parliamentary is the most popular form of debate in the world and the most popular form of collegiate debate in the United States.  It is a format that is accessible to students of all different background and perspectives, and, since the topic changes every single round, emphasizes knowledge and research in a breadth of issues.

The camp is rigorously structured in such a way that emphasizes both theory and practice, with classroom lessons running from morning to night, and exemplary instruction offered throughout. In the context of only a week-long camp, there will be an extraordinary fifteen (15) practice rounds evaluated by professional critics who are college competitors and coaches; the fifteen rounds comprise roughly one-third of the total time spent at camp. The rest of the time is spent learning communication theory from professionals and academics, practicing strong research methods, and utilizing small-group exercises to enhance the students’ understanding of the techniques taught. The fundamental premise is that through a combination of theory and practice, the students will not only understand how to write speeches with strong argumentative rigor, but also how to present them in an effective manner to their colleagues and critics.

Parliamentary debate is the most popular form of debate in the world, and it’s only growing. By emphasizing a liberal education approach to debate, where breadth of knowledge is placed at a premium, it is enjoyable to students of all different backgrounds and approaches. At SNFI, we take a student’s passion for debate and argumentation, and use it in order to teach them life skills such as effective presentation, critical thinking skills, and research in an academic setting.

Director's Note:

Parliamentary debate offers high school students a unique opportunity to master a broad range of valuable skills – critical thinking, persuasive public speaking & knowledge of world affairs – that will help them succeed in the classroom & in the “real world” of business, government and community.

The fact that mastering these skills also translates into a high level of competitive success at the high school level is what makes parliamentary debate so rewarding to coach.

My goal in structuring this year’s SNFI Parliamentary Debate program is to make sure every student walks away with a deeper understanding of the fundamentals of persuasion, a variety of useful frameworks for debating questions of policy/value/fact, a toolbox full of proven tactics for first & second speakers, and a big-picture context for evaluating world affairs.

Since the norms of parliamentary debate vary from judge-to-judge & region-to-region, our goal is to broaden the tools & strategies that our students can use to succeed in any situation.  Rather than teach a one-size-fits-all method to parliamentary debate, the broad skills of our instructors and a newly expanded lecture/practice format is designed to give you the opportunity to drill down in areas of interest while maximizing your exposure to new perspectives and winning ideas.

I look forward to working with you all this summer to help you get more than ever out of your experience with parliamentary debate!

-Bryan St. Amant, Co-Division Director, SNFI Parliamentary Debate
 


2018 Parliamentary Debate Staff Members Include:

Check back closer to the start of camp for details on our 2018 staff

We will continue to add additional staff members as enrollment and availability dictate. Details are posted on additional staff members as they are confirmed and as we have complete biographic information available. Staff listing may not be fully up to date or reflect all hires to date.


2017 Parliamentary Debate Staff Members Included:

Stanford National Forensic Institute - Andrew Bempah (Congress & Parli Instructor)

Andrew Bempah, Congress & Parli Instructor

Andrew is a rising junior at Stanford currently majoring in Management Science and Engineering. As a freshman competing for SDS, Andrew broke at multiple APDA tournaments and was awarded the nation's top novice speaker at the US Universities British Parliamentary National Championships.  Andrew attended Evanston Township High School in Chicago where he competed in Congressional debate under the guidance of Jeff Hannan and former national champion Noah Whinston .


Stanford National Forensic Institute - Bryan St. Amant (Division Director, Parliamentary)

Bryan St. Amant, Division Director, Parliamentary

Bryan St. Amant co-founded Windsor High School’s parliamentary debate program in 2007.  Under his leadership, Windsor has won or reached the final round of parliamentary debate at UOP, James Logan, Claremont, Bishop O’Dowd, Santa Clara Spring, the Windsor Invitational and the California State Championship.  Five Windsor parliamentary debaters have finished in the top-10 in of the NSDA's national ranking, including the 1st & 2nd ranked parli debaters in the nation.  Bryan's unique perspective on persuasion and argumentation draws from his distinguished career as a marketing executive/CEO in addition to his experience as a national-circuit policy debater -- winning the California State Championship for Damien High School and serving as captain of the UC Berkeley debate team.  Bryan holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from UC Berkeley, an MS in Management from MIT, and is Founder & CEO of VinterActive LLC.


Stanford National Forensic Institute - Claire Ernst (Parliamentary Instructor)

Claire Ernst, Parliamentary Instructor

I graduated from Winsor High School's engineering program in 2016, having competed for the Windsor Debate Team for three years. I saw a decent amount of competitive success in Parliamentary debate, not so much in Public Forum or Extemporaneous speaking. After high school, I took up coaching Parli at Windsor, which I will continue to make the time to do because I absolutely love teaching and helping students become confident speakers. My greatest passions in debate are colorful intros and foreign policy/military intervention.

I'm an Economics major at my local junior college with a flair for American history and statistics. Alongside my dream of becoming a teacher, I hope I am able to pursue coaching debate for the forseeable future. Presently, I work for the Sonoma County Water Agency, which allows me to get up-close and personal with our local waterways while also giving me a healthy wariness of government. I also get paid to head the California branch of a political organization I am affiliated with, and the frequent trips to D.C. the job affords make my history buff self very hapy.

In my free time, you can find me at a local car show or in my garage, tinkering with my '69 El Camino. ~


Stanford National Forensic Institute - Jonathan Haderlein (LD & Parli Instructor)

Jonathan Haderlein, LD & Parli Instructor

Jon has competed in debate for ten years and coached for two. While competing for North Hollywood High School he qualified for the TOC in Public Forum and Congressional Debate and made elimination rounds in both Lincoln Douglas and Congressional Debate at both the California State Championship and the NFL National Tournament. Jon went to college at the University of Chicago, and during his fourth year he became the highest ranked individual UChicago APDA debater in recorded history (a record he hopes will soon be broken). While competing in British Parliamentary Debate he was the 2014 North American Universities Debating Champion as well as a two-time Hart House IV Finalist, a two-time USUDC Semifinalist, a Cambridge IV Semifinalist, and a Yale IV Semifinalist. 

Jon has been coaching high school debate in California for two years, during which he has coached students to elimination rounds at the California State Tournament in both public forum and parliamentary debate as well as coaching a student to late elimination rounds in Lincoln Douglas at the 2016 NSDA National Championship. He is excited to be teaching at SNFI, even though it will take him away from his four year old shar-pei labrador mixes, in part because his best friend and fellow 2014 North American Champion Krikor will be teaching as well. 


Stanford National Forensic Institute - Krikor Kouyoumdjian (Parli Instructor)

Krikor Kouyoumdjian, Parli Instructor

Krikor Kouyoumdjian has been involved in debate for 12 years as both a competitor and a coach. In shigh school he compeded in Congress and Parli at the state champion level as well as winning the Duke Moot Court competition undefeated. Krikor attended Loyola Marymount University and competed in British Parliamentary debate as well as APDA. He attended 5 different national championships, making it to elimination rounds in each one. He has won multiple tournaments at the national and international level, most notably the 2013 Oxford IV and the 2014 North American Championships. 

Krikor has experience coaching and teaching students at every grade level from elementary to high school and has worked as a debate coach at 5 schools in the Los Angeles area. Most recently his 5th and 6th graders from the Center for Early Education won the National Championship title for their age range in the MSPDP.


Stanford National Forensic Institute - Tori Sheber (Parliamentary Instructor)

Tori Sheber, Parliamentary Instructor

I have been competing in forensics for over six years. I competed for four years in high school and two years in college. Though my primary focus has always been parliamentary debate, I have won awards in Lincoln-Douglas, extemporaneous, and impromptu. I was ranked the #1 Community College parliamentary debater in May 2016. I coached debate at my former high school and will continue coaching debate in Los Angeles this year. 


Stanford National Forensic Institute - Anna Skarr (Parliamentary Instructor)

Anna Skarr, Parliamentary Instructor

A rising sophomore in International Relations and Disease Biology at UC Davis, Anna competed in forensics for four years at Windsor High School, captaining the parliamentary team her senior year. She holds a Degree of Superior Distinction from the National Speech and Debate Honor Society. During her parliamentary debate career, she reached semifinals at four invitationals and won one, also reaching finals for extemporaneous speaking at the University of the Pacific's Jon Schamber Invitational. Having judged at SNFI for the past two years, Anna is a returning member of the family of debaters who make this camp possible. 


Stanford National Forensic Institute - Megan Wilson (Parliamentary Instructor)

Megan Wilson, Parliamentary Instructor

Megan debated at Yale University for 4 years. She had great success in both American and British Parliamentary styles. In the fall she will start work at Cornerstone Research in New York.

 



Upcoming Camps

1-Week Advanced Parliamentary Program

The 1-Week Advanced Parliamentary Program provides an opportunity for students who have previously attended an SNFI Parliamentary camp to join into the second week of the 2-Week Parliamentary Program.  Students in this program will skip over the first week's introductory base materials and will pick up directly with the advanced seminar curriculum and in depth practice debates geared for more advanced and serious Parliamentary debaters.  This program is offered based on th...

1-Week Parliamentary Program

The Stanford Parliamentary Debate program returns this summer, bringing the same professionalism to parliamentary debate that SNFI has brought to policy debate and Lincoln-Douglas debate for the past 26 years. Serious student of parliamentary debate wanting to take their activity to the next level are encouraged to attend, as are those just beginning in this style of argumentation. A special Advanced section is planned for this summer. Small group activities ensure that students of all ...

2-Week Advanced Parliamentary Program

The 2-Week Advanced Parliamentary Program provides an opportunity for students who have previously attended an SNFI Parliamentary camp to join into the second week of the 3-Week Parliamentary Program.  Students in this program will skip over the first week's introductory base materials and will pick up directly with the advanced seminar curriculum and in depth practice debates geared for more advanced and serious Parliamentary debaters.  This program is offered based on th...

2-Week Parliamentary Program

Our two week Parliamentary program will provide students with the opportunity to participate in more practice debates and attend more lectures with our faculty on theoretical and practical issues that are critical to success in Parliamentary debate.

Please view our one week Parliamentary program for more details of what a student will experience during the SNFI Parliamentary program.

Director's Note:

Parliamentary debate offers high ...

3-Week Parliamentary Program

Our three week Parliamentary program will provide students with maximum opportunity to participate in practice debates and attend more lectures with our faculty on theoretical and practical issues that are critical to success in Parliamentary debate, touching on an incredibly wide and diverse range of topic area seminars and lectures.

Please view our one- and two-week Parliamentary program for more details of what a student will experience during the SNFI Parliamentary progra...

Worlds Schools Parliamentary

This camp will focus on the Worlds Schools style of Parliamentary debate.

More details will be posted late in the spring.