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Detroit Teens Make History as First Black Female Team to Win Debate Championship

A female Detroit-area debate team made history this month by becoming the first Black team to win the Urban Debate League’s National Championship.

University Prep Academy seniors Tiera Colvin and Tamara Morrison are the only Black female debate team to win at the high school national championship, which took place in San Francisco during the weekend of April 14-17.

According to a profile by Detroit’s WXYZ, the two young women face a male-dominated debate world that has not seen a lot of gender or racial diversity until now.

Their win in San Francisco qualified the two women for the Tournament of Champions at the University of Kentucky on April 30.

“The Tournament of Champions is the Super Bowl of debates,” said debate team coach Sharon Hopkins.

“I want to get into finals and I want to win,” said Colvin.

“We’re doing the hard work and doing the preparations to make sure that becomes reality,” said Morrison.

The team is asking people to help fund the expensive trip and cover other expenses. Donate at

“The donations will be very helpful,” said Camille Hibbler, principal of University Prep Academy.

If Colvin and Morrison win the April 30 tournament, they will also make history as the first Black female team to walk away with a victory.


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