Debating Championships in Serbia

My experience at the European Universities Debating Championships held in Novi Sad, Serbia this August was a fruitful and thrilling one. In my week there, I was involved in competitive debating as a speaker, competing against teams from all around Europe. Having been involved with debating since my first year, I was excited to broaden my horizons, meet new people and engaged it critical discussions with them. I  was somewhat nervous before arriving, since the competition is regarded as Europe’s very best so I knew a lot of the teams there would be difficult to come up against. I think by the end of the competition, however, I was satisfied and felt that I had gained a lot. I gained confidence in myself, knowing that I can compete at such a high level. Further, I learnt to overcome my own fears and anxiousness as I dealt with mounting pressure to do well; even though some of my performances were suboptimal I felt pleased that I had the mental strength to keep going. I also felt that I developed my analytical skills further, having faced some top speakers and watched some excellently inspiring debates on topics ranging from art, international relations, healthcare, the #metoo movement and American politics. Upon returning to Edinburgh, I have a lot that I feel like I can give back after this experience. As a member of the Debates Union, I can use my improved skills to help others get better, and offer broader perspectives on debating and critical thinking. It was also a great bonding experience with other members of the society, as we went through the intensity of this competition together. All in all, the competition helped me a lot to overcome my fears and anxieties of failure, and has sharpened my analytical skills, something that I think will be invaluable for my personal development.

Categories: Europe, Go Abroad Fund, Serbia

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