Our Mission

Fostering passion for debate through community building.

Community Building Model


Our program operates under a community building model in which we connect elementary, middle, and high school students in District 65 to foster interest in debate from early on. Students coming out of elementary schools in District 65 get a chance to meet their future opponents and teammates at the middle school level before the start of their 6th-grade year. The current middle schoolers have the opportunity of introducing their new team members to debate and learning from the Evanston Township High School (ETHS) debate team. The staff is mostly composed of ETHS students, which is the high school that most District 65 students enroll in, allowing current ETHS students to directly interact with their future debate team. The staff is also supplemented with collegiate-level debaters that will help lead the upper-level debate labs. 

Statement on Accessibility 

Debate is often understood as an exclusionary activity by virtue of the costs associated with supplies, coaching, and summer instruction. To directly address the issues of access and equity surrounding debate programming, our camp operates under a low enrollment fee model. To ensure that an undue burden is not placed on our campers or their family, the MMSDL Summer Debate Camp provides all supplies necessary for debating. Campers will be able to take home a full set of core files and a debate box to use for the future. We also offer financial aid to those who request it to ensure that there is no monetary inhibitor to enrollment. 

Fostering Passion for Debate

Early involvement in debate is crucial for students development and that of the debate programs at their schools. By encouraging early engagement in debate, we hope to build a robust pipeline of debaters to service throughout the school year. Our goal is for students to not only think critically, research, and debate from a young age, but also continue their debate careers past the middle school level. As a result, we ensure our staff includes highly trained and motivated high school debaters, some of whom in future years will likely be ex-campers. 

COVID-19 Response


The camp will be held in person under the guidance of Northwestern University’s COVID-19 policy. There will be no online modality for the camp, unless a debater contacts us that they are unable to attend in person due to illness or an emergency. All staff will be required to test before the camp and are strongly encouraged to be fully vaccinated for their safety. If there were to be an uptick in cases that would not allow us to move forward with an in-person camp, we would move to an online format. Plans are currently being made in the case that we do indeed need to move online. 

 

Our Executive Team

Get to Know Us

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Camila Vicens

Executive Director

Hi! My name is Camila Vicens and I am Northwestern University sophomore studying Political Science and Philosophy with Secondary-Teaching and Integrated Marketing/Communications Certificates. I am an Academic Skills Educator at Washington Elementary School and the Head Debate Coach at Nichols Middle School. My passions include education, running, and the outdoors. I am so excited to be working as part of the Summer Debate Institute’s team for the second year in a row. Can’t wait to meet all of our campers this August!

Christian Kline

Co-Director

My name is Christian Kline. I am a long-time educator and debate coach. I am the current Head Coach at Bessie Rhodes and have been part of the Illinois Middle School Debate League since its inception. Excited to be working with our great team this year and to meet our students.

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Shreya Chimpiri

Co-Director

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Our Instructors & Support Staff

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Adela Bautista

Position/Role

Hi! My name is Adela Bautista and I am a  senior at Evanston Township High School policy debate team. For the past three summers, I have attended the University of Michigan’s Summer Debate Institutes and really love researching and debating. In my free time I enjoy reading philosophy, being outdoors, playing tennis and hanging out with friends and family. I’m a very outgoing person and I’m excited to work with MMSDL this summer!

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Sophie Brown

Lab Assistant

Hi! I just wanted to share my bio and photo for the website- Hi! I’m Sophie Brown and I’m really excited to be apart of MMSDL this summer. I’ve debated in policy and congress, and have also competed in the extemporaneous speech event. I’m a senior at ETHS and am involved with student union and Evanston wrestling. Looking forward to working and learning with everyone!

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Erris Maguire

Lab Assistant

My name is Erris Maguire and I’m an incoming Junior at Evanston Township High school. I moved here in January 2021 from New York. I began debating in elementary school and started competitively in middle school,continuing into high school! I love reading about philosophy  and theory, and try to constantly question and challenge myself to think outside the box. Outside of debate, I love film photography and retro art forms, as well as exploring Chicago with my friends.

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Nova Horrell

Lab Assistant

Hi! I am Nova (she/her). I am an incoming freshman at Hampshire College studying psychology. I have 7 years of debate experience in Policy, LD, and Congress at ETHS resulting in multiple national and state semifinals and finals performances. I have also coached at Nichols for 3 year. Outside of debate, I write and work at Evanston Games and Cafe. I am really excited to provide a fun, safe, and educational space to all debaters this summer!

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Barbara Tomarzade

Lab Leader

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Emmett Ebels-Duggan

Lab Assistant

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Gabriela Evans

Lab Assistant

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Zoe Weinstein

Lab Leader

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Kathy Martinez

Lab Leader

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Matthew Sung

Lab Leader

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Milo Slevin

Lab Assistant

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Mollie Hartenstein

Lab Leader

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Mary-Ester Nguyen

Head of Camper Feedback

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Student Volunteer 1

Head of Camper Logistics

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Student Volunteer #2

Assistant to The Director

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Contact Us
(713)-933-4463
vicensc@district65.net