You don't often meet debaters who can wrap up their best arguments in poetry-- but that's just what you might hear if you watch Nyisha Young in action. A junior at East Palo Alto Phoenix Academy, Nyisha is in her second year of debate with SVUDL and she's growing by leaps and bounds. She earned a 2nd place individual speaker award in at the Pumpkin Classic after wrapping up her argument with a poem detailing her points (she and her partner Esmeralda took home 5th overall).
Nyisha's creativity is just one part of what makes her an accomplished debater. She's also exceptionally hardworking, focusing on solid preparation before a tournament to make sure she is ready for anything her opponents may throw at her.
She hasn't always been the debate powerhouse that she is today. Just two years ago she was the shy girl in the corner, intimidated by public speaking. Joining debate helped her find her voice and the confidence to speak up. As Nyisha explains herself, "When people say 'oh try this, it'll change your life' I really believe that it will and does. Debate has opened up so many doors and experiences that I never would have dreamed of being able to have."
Looking to the future, Nyisha plans to pursue a future where she can continue to have fun and hone her argumentation chops---with a career in law, and of course, continuing to write poetry too.