Former Elsberry High School graduate and current University of Central Missouri student, Mariah Suddarth, recently returned a champion after competing in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland, 17th Annual International Montgomery Cup debating competition.
“The Montgomery Cup competition is very unique,” said Suddarth. “A small group of students are chosen from the University of Central Missouri’s speech and debate team to travel as representatives to the British Isles where we compete against English Speaking Unions such as Cambridge, Oxford, UC-Dublin, Glasgow, and St. Andrews. It’s challenging for us because they use World’s style debating format which is based more on logic and persuasive rhetoric rather than the evidence-based, American parliamentary format that we use in the U.S.”
The team returned victorious to the United States with a score of 22-15 after debating topics concerning the merits of gun control, military intervention and the principles of the media.
Suddarth was honored at UCM’s debate and forensics annual banquet where Missouri State Senator, David Pearce, and University President, Charles Ambrose, presented her and the team with an approved Missouri Senate Resolution recognizing their success. She was also recognized for her accomplishments at the Missouri State competition where she broke into out-rounds for parliamentary debate and finished second in impromptu speaking, fifth in extemporaneous speaking and sixth in program oral interpretation.
Suddarth is a junior at UCM majoring in public relations with a minor in international legal studies. She plans to further her education at Drake University’s school of law in Des Moines to obtain a law degree in international human rights.
“I’ve always enjoyed learning about other cultures,” said Suddarth. “That’s why I’m so competitive when representing UCM in the Montgomery Cup competition. It’s the cultural exposure that I appreciate and it prepares me for many of the issues I’ll be studying in the very near future.”
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