UTech, Jamaica Hosts JADE Debate Academy and Open 2018


Mr. Germaine Barrett, (at podium) President of the Jamaica Association for Debating and Empowerment (JADE) welcomes participants at the Opening Ceremony of  JADE Debate Academy and Open 2018 held on Tuesday, December 18, 2018 at the Shared Facilities Building UTech, Jamaica Papine Campus.

The Jamaican Association for Debating and Empowerment (JADE) Limited in partnership with the University of Technology, Jamaica launched its 3rd annual Debate Academy and Open 2018 on Tuesday, December 18, 2018 at the University’s Papine Campus. The Academy runs from December 18-20, 2018 at the University. The Academy attracted scores of budding debaters from high schools and tertiary institutions eager to further hone their skills in the art of debating. 

JADE President, Mr. Germaine Barrett, who is also Coach of the UTech, Jamaica Debating and Public Speaking Society in his welcome at the Opening Ceremony, noted that the annual Academy is intended to serve as a catalyst for social transformation through critical thinking,  effective communication and problem solving, in keeping with the Academy’s motto of “Fueling a thinking Revolution.”  Mr Barrett noted that during the Academy participants will benefit from world-class training by expert international debaters - Dr. Michael Hester, University of West Georgia, Dr. Eric Smaw, Rollins College and Mr. Kenneth Newby of Morehouse College, USA.

The Debate Academy consists of a series of workshops designed to assist participants to gain practical knowledge and to develop their debating skills in an interactive setting.  Mr. Barrett thanked international partners and UTech, Jamaica for their support in the staging of the event and specially thanked President, Professor Stephen Vasciannie, CD for accepting JADE’s invitation to be Patron of the  3rd annual Debate Academy and Open 2018.

Professor Stephen Vasciannie, CD,  President, University of Technology, Jamaica and Patron, JADE Debate Academy and Open 2018 addressing students at the opening ceremony.

Professor Stephen Vasciannie, in his welcome shared that he was happy to serve as Patron of the 3rd staging of the Debate Academy and Open 2018 and to facilitate the University’s accommodation of 80 participants and visiting educators on the Papine Campus. 

Noting that the JADE Debate Academy and Open has been held annually at UTech, Jamaica over the past three years, President Vasciannie said that “it has helped to expand participants’ critical thinking and effective communication skills in debating.”  He noted that the discipline of debating is important to the University and that “the synergy between UTech, Jamaica and JADE augurs well for the continued development of debating skills of young persons in Jamaica and the region.”

Professor Vasciannie urged participants to make the best use of the opportunity to learn from the team of world-class local and international trainers at their disposal during the “debating fiesta.”  The President in underscoring some of the benefits of debating to society and in society, shared some attributes of debating with participants.  He noted that debating supports the development of critical thinking, powers of expressions, the ability to think on one’s feet and in the shaping of democracy through the use of arguments. 

During the Academy participants will be exposed to the British Parliamentary (B.P.) Debating and Adjudication, Motion Analysis, Debate Strategy and Case Construction, International Relations, Law, Economic as well as a “Debating in the Curriculum” Workshop on December 19 and Practice Debates and Debate Tournament (Debate Open).


Michelle Beckford (Mrs.)
Corporate Communications Manager
University of Technology, Jamaica
Telephone: 970-5299
Email: mbeckford@utech.edu.jm