AHS DEBATERS WIN PED XING DEBATE & QUIZ BEE CHAMPIONSHIPS
Ateneo Debaters Renz Reyes (11-A), Luigi Alcañeses (11-A), and Hans Gonzalez (10-M) of AHS A won the Ped Xing debate championship held in the UP Diliman Campus on December 13, 2015. The win was a 5-0 unanimous decision against AHS Team B, composed of Nicky Solis (11-B), Ervin Grana (11-L), and Paulo Valencia (11-N). The all-Ateneo final was the first time in seven years of the competition that both sides of the debate were represented by teams from the same institution. AHS A successfully opposed the motion, “This house would grant universal citizenship to environmental refugees”.
In addition, AHS A’s Renz Reyes was named Overall Best Speaker of the Tournament and Best Speaker of the Finals. It is also noteworthy that Alcañeses and Reyes won the Ped Xing Debate Championship in 2014 with alumnus Adrian Padilla (J2015), and have completed the first successful back-to-back win in the history of the competition.
Special mention goes to Ervin Grana, for performing a truly heroic feat during the event. The semifinal round was scheduled to take place on Sunday afternoon, December 13, but was suddenly moved to the morning instead without any prior announcement. Ervin’s two teammates, who had made prior family commitments for the morning, were unable to reach the venue in time to compete. Grana agreed to face the opposing team—Assumption College A—alone, in a 3-on-1 match, rather than see his team drop out of the competition by default. His solo performance required him to make three full seven minute speeches, and a four-minute reply speech, without any special treatment or added preparation time due to the unusual circumstances. In an inspiring and courageous feat before a crowded audience, Ervin won the semifinal singlehandedly on a unanimous 3-0 decision. His teammates thanked and congratulated him for his decision.
In the other major event of Ped Xing, the United Nations Simulation Quiz Bee, it was AHS B’s turn to take home a trophy. The team was comprised of Nicky Solis, Ervin Grana, Paulo Valencia, JC Cruz (11-L), and Lorenzo Lazaro (11-A). The Quiz Bee was the first of its kind, as over 20 teams comprised of five students each were tasked to convene as the UN Security Council and create resolutions to various international conflicts including refugee, geopolitical, economic, and environmental problems. Teams were scored based on how creative, effective, and feasible their resolutions were. AHS B bested the 20 other teams and was awarded as the “Best Conflict Resolution Team.” They impressed a panel of judges and experts in the field of Political Science by showing their advanced knowledge of international politics.
The Ateneo Debaters were represented in the other events as well. Lorenzo Lazaro and Matti Tan (9-A) represented AHS in the Essay Writing Contest, while Carlos Tiu (11-A) and honorary team member Ryan Encarnacion (11-A) participated in the poster-making contest. The team would like to specially recognize and thank Mr. Encarnacion for generously sharing his time and talents to complete the AHS contingent to the event.
The UP Political Society hosted Ped Xing 2015 in the UP Diliman Campus from December 12-13. Ped Xing is a multidisciplinary event comprised of four different competitions, all centered around a particular theme in the field of Political Science. Three guest speakers of various specializations highlighted the event. This year’s theme was about the contributions that the Philippines could make in a globalized world. The event was attended by over 100 students and teachers from all over the NCR.
All Ateneo HS Debate teams are coached by Mahar Mangahas, Henry Fernando, Miguel Ventura, Isaac Lee, and Rafa Lapira. The team is moderated by Mrs. Fe de Jesus of the AHS English subject area.
The debaters extend their deep gratitude and thanks to the Office of Student Activities for their unwavering support to the team. The team also extends their appreciation to the entire Ateneo High School community for its well wishes. The team is preparing for one of the most prestigious debate tournaments in the world—the Singapore Debate Open—which it will be attending from December 17-21 this week.