SVUDL Women's Association


The SVUDL Women's Association exists to reverse a nationwide trend of attrition among talented female debaters - though novice debaters often include more young women, the varsity division nationally remains dominated by males. We are proud to have made great progress: monthly meetings now regularly attract dozens of young women who share out on personal struggles, build academic skills, support each other in college preparation and much more. Thanks to a dedicated core of volunteers, women are not only the majority of SVUDL debaters but also the majority of team captains and leaders on their campuses.

We are actively seeking volunteers - particularly women willing to share their experiences developing strong voices and perservering through adversity on their way to career success. Our young women are excited to become lawyers, entrepreneurs, organizers, politicians, engineers, and more; they are full of talent and inspiration. The easiest ways to contribute are as guest speakers and visitors at tournaments, a commitment of only an hour that can make a long-term difference. With the help of HP and Google, we launched a strong Legal Career Mentor program that affords a chance to work even more deeply with individual students - click here to learn more and apply.

Core volunteers can make an even deeper impact:

  • Work with coaches to recruit and build relationships with promising female debaters
  • Collaborate with program staff to help debaters through the transitions from novice to JV and from JV to Varsity
  • Lead sessions on college access and student leadership
  • Run an informal conversation for young women during lunch at tournaments
  • Create a safe space for young women to discuss any issues confidentially

For more information, contact Program Director Shauntrice Martin at