Debate is a transformative event. It forces participants to evaluate deeply held beliefs, it organizes and structures discourse into an equitable environment, and it rewards critical thought by running it through the gambit of questioning. Debaters often report that this event creates fundamental shifts in how they see the world, and it would be selfish to lock this power away.
Luke Yeates recognized the benefit of debate and chose to bring it to those with the least access, Idaho inmates. Every Tuesday Luke holds a two hour session at ISCC, a medium security prison outside Boise, where inmates receive instruction in theory and framework, hold discussions about current events, and engage in debate. After twelve weeks the prison holds a public debate, where members invite their family. The program has existed for about a year, and has already seen genuine success with its participants.
Please come to the symposium to learn about Luke's incredible work!
Luke is a Senior at Boise State with a major in Communication and an emphasis in Media Studies and Journalism. He is also finishing up a minor in History. Luke is the current president of the Boise State Speech and Debate team, a team that has received multiple national championships. He is also the Vice President of Lambda Pi Eta, an honorarium designed to engage communication students.
Luke found his passion for debate after discovering its qualities first hand. He credits debate with giving his life direction again, and uses that direction to share debate’s power with any who are interested, including those who are incarcerated.