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Volunteer with urban student debaters! No debate experience needed!

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Chicago Debates

  • A group opportunity. Invite your friends.
  • 12 people are interested

Academic Debate is life changing for the debaters, but you can benefit too!

Why Judge Debate?

  • Empower a young person
  • Serve as a conscientious educator
  • Use your professional skills to support future leaders
  • Improve your professional network working with other judges
  • Academic service learning opportunity
  • Give back

The debate tournament is a long day, but you can feel free to help out in shifts. Come support one (or all) of our working shifts. Stipends are available even though we will be entirely remote for the season.

Shift 1: 8:00am - 1:00pm

Shift 2: 1:00pm - 6:00pm

Friday shifts: 5:30-9:00

This year's debate topic will be about criminal justice reform. Sign up for tournaments here: https://bit.ly/3iIM7DB

*Please note debate tournaments will take place virtually this season. To volunteer you will need access to a camera and stable internet connection.

Before Judging, volunteers will receive a 60 minute introduction training on policy debate judging to ensure volunteers are comfortable with this new opportunity! Volunteers will also need to pass a background check.

Training dates can be found at the link below and will be conducted virtually. If you are interested in learning more about time commitment for this opportunity please email Lauren at lhince@chicagodebates.org
Training Information:https://www.chicagodebates.org/volunteer/

A volunteer who judges a full day of debate impacts 16 students who wouldn't have had the chance to be heard otherwise. A half-day of your time impacts 8 students, and just two hours of your time helps four ambitious and courageous students!

More opportunities with Chicago Debates

No additional volunteer opportunities at this time.

About Chicago Debates



Mission Statement

We envision a world in which Chicago youth are empowered to find their voice, succeed in college and career, and become leaders in their community.


As a partner to Chicago Public Schools, the Chicago Debates promotes, facilitates, and runs the Chicago Debate League (CDL), providing competitive debate programming in high schools and middle schools across Chicago, serving over 1400 students. The Chicago Debates also trains teachers to use debate tools and methodologies to improve the delivery of regular curricula. Debate provides low-income and minority Chicago students with a unique educational program that dramatically improves academic results and expands college and life opportunities.

Children & Youth
Education & Literacy
Justice & Legal


We'll work with your schedule.


This is a Virtual Opportunity, with no fixed address.


  • General Education
  • Mentoring
  • Literacy / Reading
  • Youth Services
  • Advocacy
  • Community Outreach


  • People 55+
  • Group


  • Background Check
  • Must be at least 18
  • Orientation or Training
  • Once you have gone through Judge training you can volunteer at as many tournaments as you would like. Typically we have tournaments every weekend between October and April. The schedule can be found on our volunteer page.

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