Papua New Guinea
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Debates an integral part of university learning: Prof. Fr Gibbs

Divine Word University (DWU) has congratulated the University of Papua New Guinea for winning the 2023 Intervarsity Debate competition. DWU was host to this year’s competition in Madang.

University of Technology (UniTech) finished in second place, and host DWU finished third. Six universities competed in the three-day event from September 21st – 23rd, 2023. The debate competition was themed ‘Developing a safe, innovative and sustainable life towards 2050, in Papua New Guinea’.

In the Debate Heats preliminary rounds, semi-final and grand final rounds, topics related to the theme, sparked interesting discussions, showcasing impressive research and analytical skills, confidence and public speaking.

Officiating at the opening of the debate competition, DWU President, Professor Fr Philip Gibbs, highlighted the importance of debate as an integral part of university life because it draws on the strengths and characteristics that universities try to develop, in order to help students grow in expressing themselves verbally, thinking logically, and being able to communicate in a meaningful way.

DWU acknowledged teams that battled in the first and second elimination rounds respectively; Western Pacific University (WPU), Pacific Adventist University (PAU), Institute of Business 
Studies University and Divine Word University. 

“Everyone’s a winner. The quality of debating has been extraordinary. The topics have drawn out student’s imaginations and ability to debate on the different topics,” said Professor Fr Gibbs.

The Intervarsity Debate shield was presented to UPNG with cash prize of K5000. Respective runner-ups and participating universities also received various consolation prizes as a token of appreciation from host, DWU. 

Next year’s Intervarsity Debate Competition will be hosted by UPNG.