[eDebate] USA-Thailand Friendship Debates

Alfred Snider alfred.snider
Fri Dec 26 02:00:24 CST 2008

The Thai government and the US Embassy in Thailand have announced a 
series of events commemorating the 175th anniversary of Thai-USA 
relations. The events will take place 27 January-1 February 2009.

There will be events at the US Embassy as well as a debate tournament at 
Mahidol University, held in the All Asians format (3 on 3) with three 
preliminary debates, semifinals and finals. An open debate workshop for 
students will be held during the stay. There will also be a USA-Thai 
friendship debate between Thais and Americans that will be a publicized 
open event. Other events will be scheduled by the Commissioner of Higher 
Education of Thailand and the US Embassy.

The University of Vermont's Lawrence Debate Union has been selected to 
represent the USA. All expenses for the USA group will be shared by the 
US Embassy and the Thai Chancellor of Higher Education. Major Thai 
universities (Chulalongkorn, Mahidol, Assumption and others) will 
represent Thailand.

The Vermont contingent will consist of Alfred Snider, Edwin Lawrence 
Professor of Forensics and director of the Lawrence Debate Union, along 
with three students, Lucas Caress (senior from New York City), Sam 
Natale (sophomore from West Palm Beach, Florida) and Allison Hamlin 
(sophomore, Essex Junction, Vermont). Sam and Lucas recently finished 
third at the elite and extremely difficult World Universities Peace 
Invitational Debates in Malaysia and seem to have charmed all of Asia 
with their fresh approach to debating and argumentation. The invitation 
to the tournament specifically asked for their attendance with Dr. 
Snider, along with another student who will represent Vermont at the 
upcoming World Universities Debating Championship in Cork, Ireland which 
begins on December 27 2008. After an open call Allison Hamlin was selected.

"It is highly gratifying," said Dr. Snider, "to receive this invitation. 
We debated in Thailand last year and found it to be a fabulous 
experience. I look forward to celebrating 175 years of USA-Thai 
friendship. I admire Thailand for its rich culture, intellectual 
tradition and the fact that it was never a colony. I want to thank 
Professor Piyanart Faktorngpan of Chulalongkorn University for working 
so hard on this project, along with the US Embassy and the Thai 
Commissioner of Higher Education. It is clearly a sign that the 
University of Vermont's debate program, the Lawrence Debate Union, 
continues to rise in its global reputation."

"We hope to set a standard for the 21st Century," Snider added, "that 
disagreements need to be solved by logical and reasoned discourse, not 
by violence. We must learn to trust the force of ideas, not the ideas of 

Alfred C. Snider aka Tuna
Edwin Lawrence Professor of Forensics
University of Vermont
Huber House, 475 Main Street, UVM, Burlington, VT 05405 USA
Global Debate Blog http://globaldebateblog.blogspot.com
Debate Central http://debate.uvm.edu
World Debate Institute http://debate.uvm.edu/wdi/
World Debate Institute Blog http://worlddebateinstitute.blogspot.com
802-656-0097 office telephone
802-656-4275 office fax

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