UA CESR Hosts 11th Annual Moral Forum Competition – Awards $10,000 in Scholarships

By:    Date: 11-15-2016

img_3261Two pairs of UH 101: Moral Forum students competed in the final round of the eleventh annual James P. Hayes, Jr. Moral Forum debate tournament on Wednesday, November 9 in the Ferguson Theatre. Eleven accomplished students received more than $10,000 in scholarships. Bert McLelland, a political science and theater major from Tuscaloosa, AL, and Hannah Clark, a nursing major from Huntsville, AL, competed against Kailey Webster, a theater major from Prattville, AL, and Paul Bousquet, an economics and political science major from Franklin, TN. Both finalist teams had an exemplary debate and provided an exceptional final round. Congratulations to Kailey and Paul on winning the final round.

Other scholarship recipients included semifinalists Carlyle Ascik, Tyler Beisel, Morgan Helm, and Carter Yeatts. Chase Garcia received the Outstanding Debater Award while Wyatt Kuehster and Cole Johnson were awarded the Tarif Haque Outstanding Written Case Award, in honor of 2012 Moral Forum Champion Tarif Haque who passed away this year.

Moral Forum is an annual dialogue and debate program that involves extensive research as students prepare value-based case studies representing positions on each side of a controversial issue. This year, students argued in support of and opposition to the statement: In order to be a more moral society, the United States government should permit the sale of human organs, in order to allow monetary compensation for cadaveric organs as well as non-essential organs from living donors.

In teams of two, students conducted research, attended a nine-part lecture series, and constructed position statements that addressed both sides of the debate concerning an organ market for two required preliminary debate rounds. Each team argued both affirmative and negative sides of the same resolution.

Nearly 60 students were enrolled in the Fall 2016 UH 101: Moral Forum course. Guest lecturers this fall included Dr. James Stacey Taylor, Associate Professor of Philosophy at The College of New Jersey, and Dr. Mark Fox, Associate Dean of the Indiana University-South Bend School of Medicine. Dr. Mark Nelson, the Dean of UA’s College of Communication and Information Sciences, also met with the class to discuss public speaking.