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Prospective Students

Joining the Team

The Penn State Speech & Debate Society is open to all current undergraduate students at the University Park campus. If you are interested in joining, please come to one of weekly meetings, held every Tuesday and Thursday at 6:00pm in 1 and 2 Sparks, or please contact one of our coaches or officers.

There is no fee to join, and all travel expenses are covered by the Department of Communication Arts & Sciences while competing with the team. Each member sets their own level of commitment; some students only participate in public debates while others only compete at tournaments.

If you are high school student and would like to know more information about the team or potential recruitment scholarships, please e-mail .


Women's Debate Institute Logo

The Penn State Speech & Debate Society is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the creation of the women’s debate team. Given the anniversary, we have a limited number of recruitment scholarships for incoming students. To be eligible, you must be a first year student during the 2016-2017 school year. These are available to students who competed in any high school event (CX, PF, LD, IEs, etc.). Preference will be given to students who participated in or advance the mission of the Women’s Debate Institute. The deadline is rolling, but we will review applications as soon as we receive them.

To apply, please send the following materials, along with your name and contact information to :

a) Letter explaining your interest in joining the team, your experience in debate, and any other relevant details
b) Recommendation letter from your high school coach

The Penn State Speech & Debate Society aims to provide a platform for structured, intelligent, and open debate in an environment where Penn State students can improve their skills as advocates and citizens. We compete on the NFA circuit. All undergraduate students eligible to participate, and it is free to join.