If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Katie D'Angelo, Public Service Programs Coordinator at 617-778-1914 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Participation in the Boston Debate League is transformational. The shy kids talk. The class talkers listen. Reading and thinking skills grow. Work and preparation habits put down roots. It becomes cool to be smart and persuasive. College doors open. Go ahead - get in touch with your inner miracle worker! - Greg Peterson, Tarlow, Breed, Hart & Rodgers, P.C. in Beyond the Billable
It doesn’t take a miracle worker to make a difference; just a little time and commitment. Join the BBA in our commitment to helping the young people of Boston enhance their academic skills and expanding the pipeline of racially and ethnically diverse future attorneys by volunteering for the Boston Debate League (BDL). The BDL is a non-profit organization that works in partnership with the Boston Public Schools (BPS) to support academic debate teams in local high schools and train BPS teachers to use debate as a regular part of their classroom practice. The program helps students develop valuable skills such as critical thinking, persuasive writing, and effective communication through competitive debate.
According to the BDL, debaters are three times less likely to drop out of school than non-debaters, and African-American males who debate are 70% more likely to graduate from high school than those who don't. Debate prepares students to get into college but, more importantly, it gives them the necessary skills to succeed and thrive once they get there.
BBA members will have the opportunity to donate their time to the BDL in any of three ways:
1. Volunteer Judge
The BDL holds six city-wide debate tournaments throughout the academic year where students compete in teams of two, arguing the pros and cons of public policy proposals across a broad spectrum of topics. Hundreds of judges are needed for each debate. This is about a four hour commitment.
2. Debate Mentor
The commitment is significant but gratifying. From September through March, volunteer mentors are assigned to attend a weekly, after school debate practice session lasting between one and two hours. All volunteers must submit to a CORI check and participate in a three hour training seminar to qualify for the program.
3. General Support
Those who may not be able to volunteer as a mentor or judge can provide general support, in the form of legal and other-in-kind support, event support and hosting, and volunteer outreach and shepherding.
Training is provided for all volunteers.