On November 12, 13, and 20, 2022, the Northeast Asia Debating Championships was held online, and Kosei Enomoto (School of Interdisciplinary Science, 4th year) and Haruka Kawano (School of Law, 4th year) of Kyushu University won the championships in the English as a Foreign Language (EFL) category.
This is the largest English debate tournament in Northeast Asia, with 242 participants from 121 teams from universities in Northeast Asia, including Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. Six preliminary rounds were held on November 12 and 13, and Mr. Enomoto and Ms. Kawano's team qualified in 10th place in the EFL category. The team then went on to win the first debate of the out-round, the quarterfinal, the semifinal, and the grand final on November 19, becoming the first Kyushu University team to win an international tournament.
EFL (English as a Foreign Language) category winners
Mr. Enomoto, who also won the Best Speaker Award in the grand final, commented, “I have been involved in parliamentary debate since I entered the university, and this is the fourth year of my debating career. As my graduation is coming up, I am very happy to have won the significant tournament where debaters from various countries and regions gathered. I will use the experience I gained at this tournament as a debater and debate coach.” Ms. Kawano stated, “I began parliamentary debate four years ago when I entered the university. I have had very little experience in international competitions, and I sometimes get quite nervous and my voice trembles in each speech. However, my friends in the English Speaking Society have always been encouraging me, and I was able to win the tournament. It was a great experience for me to realize that all the time I have spent up to now has not been in vain, and through the tournament, I could be exposed to various backgrounds and ways of thinking that are unique to international tournaments. I hope to use my experience at this tournament to help my juniors to be successful in their own careers.”
The other team from Kyushu U of Mami Matsuse (School of Economics, 2nd year) and Hina Namisaki (School of Economics, 2nd year) also qualified in 17th place in the EFL category, which showed that debating activities in the Kyushu U are going well.
The university will continue to support students in developing their English skills with the ability to communicate more effectively through active debating activities.
Narahiko Inoue, Professor, Faculty of Languages and Cultures
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