Two teams from the Milestone Debating Society attended the Heart of Europe International Debating Competition in Olomouc, Czech Republic between the 11th-16th July. Special congratulations to the two teams and especially to László Dolgos for being the 10th Best Male EFL and 5th Best Millennial Speaker and to Zsófia Dara for 7th Best Female EFL Speaker.
Please read below team member and Debating Society President, Zsófia Dara’s account of their time in Olomouc. Have a look at the pictures as well and like our Student Life facebook page to keep up-to-date with student news and events!
Zsófia Dara, Junior Student
Our little delegation, to which we now refer as our second family arrived in sunny Olomouc on the 11th of July tired, but with smiles on our faces. As our bus rolled into Olomouc’s bus and train station we eyed the town up. It was small but friendly. We got off the surprisingly comfy bus to meet our volunteer Nina, who we now call our friend. Nina took us to our hostel, which would be our home for the next few days. Post-arrival we checked in and received our rooms where we left our bags to go explore the city. However, the exploration didn’t last long as we were exhausted from our journey and following a nutritious meal of pizza and kebab we decided to go back to our hostel and head to bed.
Our excitements could barely be maintained as we headed to the venue of the competitions. All of us dressed up in our fancy attires and headed to the school. After group photos were taken the first round of debates were announced and we debated our prepared motion which stated: This House would ban cryptocurrencies. In the afternoon, we proceeded to debate the same motion, however, the opposite side of which we represented in the morning’s debate. All this debating made us tired so our delegation decided to grab some dinner on the way home to the hostel and watch the football game while preparing for the proceeding day’s debates.
Our second day debating Friday we had debates with a prepared motion. This House believes that the journalism and business sides of news organisations should be separate. We debated both for and against the motion during our day. On our third day of at the tournament, we had impromptu motions (meaning we had sixty minutes to prepare for our debate), which went well for our delegation. Saturday late afternoon the breaking teams were announced. Unfortunately, none of our teams could break and continue debating on Sunday. Thus, we spent Sunday sightseeing, visiting museums and visiting restaurants.
We ended our trip on Monday after attending the closing ceremony, where watched the finals between a team from Argentina and an American team debating multi-speed Europe. The tournament was eventually won by the United States representing team opposition in the debate. However, we did not have time to weep over Hungary not bringing home the title as László Dolgos an outstanding member of our society won an award for the 5th Best Millennial Speaker! Due to the excitement regarding Laci’s achievements, we almost missed our bus bringing us home to Budapest. Luckily, we made it just in time and made it home as planned that night.
All in all, our visit to Olomouc was a wonderful experience. We had a marvellous time debating against experienced and native speaking debaters. Apart from the debates, the people we met in the Czech Republic were lovely. We made progress in our debating skills, we made new international friends, and we most importantly made happy memories. We left our hearts at the Heart of Europe debating tournament and can’t wait to return next year.
We are looking forward to all the excitements the Autumn Term might hold for the Debating Society. We always welcome new members regardless of debating experience, join the Debating Society’s facebook group to avoid missing out on our trainings and events – our next stop is Zagreb in December!