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A record of Excellence


Since 2001, thousands of students have attended VBI, and collectively our students have gone on to reach levels of success that no other summer institute can match. That's why VBI is trusted by coaches, parents, and debaters across the country to provide the very best in debate education. 

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A record of Excellence


Since 2001, thousands of students have attended VBI, and collectively our students have gone on to reach levels of success that no other summer institute can match. That's why VBI is trusted by coaches, parents, and debaters across the country to provide the very best in debate education. 

In order to be super successful on the circuit, no matter which circuit, you have to go to VBI.
— Anne-Marie Hwang (VBI Alumna, Stanford 2019)

More than 50 National Championships

VBI alumni have won more national championships (across all events) than any other debate camp. This data does not include APDA, NPDA, Worlds, Middle School, or other debate events before 2015.

Since the founding of VBI, our alumni have dominated every national title. Across multiple debate events, they have won

  • the Tournament of Champions (TOC) 13 times,
  • the National Speech and Debate Association (NSDA) Nationals 18 times,
  • the National Catholic Forensics League (NCFL) Nationals 13 times, and
  • the National Debate Coaches Association (NDCA) Championships 9 times.

Other camps teach how to win rounds; we teach how to win championships. 

VBI multi-summer alumni Raffi Piliero (VBI '14, '15, '16)  and Jonas Le Barillec (VBI '14, '15, '16) after finals of The Greenhill Fall Classic  

VBI multi-summer alumni Raffi Piliero (VBI '14, '15, '16)  and Jonas Le Barillec (VBI '14, '15, '16) after finals of The Greenhill Fall Classic  

VBI is the only camp in the country whose alumni have closed out the Tournament of Champions in quarterfinals (i.e., all of the top 8 finishers), won every octafinals bid tournament, earned a majority of bids to the TOC, and won all four national championships in the same season.

Our alumni have had unprecedented success on every kind of debate circuit. They have won hundreds of national invitationals, round robins, and state tournaments across the country. VBI's success in many different styles of debate is enabled by our individualized curriculum and diverse faculty. 

VBI teaches skills that foster success not only in competitive high school debate, but beyond. VBI alumni have gone on to win the American Parliamentary Debate Association National Championship, the World Universities Debating Championship, moot court competitions at top law schools, and multiple Rhodes and Marshall Scholarships. They have matriculated at every Ivy League university and have been named among Forbes' "30 Under 30." We could not be more proud of our alumni. 

The thing about VBI that makes it different is the number of people who are there all the time who are willing to work with you as much as possible to get you better. I think that it is just incredible, and is better than any other working environment or debate coaching that I have seen.
— Ben Sprung-Keyser (Rhodes Scholar & NSDA, APDA, and World Champion)
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2016-2017 Success


VBI alumni have continued our legacy of success into the present season, winning the most competitive and prestigious tournaments in the country. 

2016-2017 Success


VBI alumni have continued our legacy of success into the present season, winning the most competitive and prestigious tournaments in the country. 

VBI alumni Nina Potischman (Hunter College, NY; VBI '15, '16) and Jack Wareham (Oakwood Secondary School, CA; VBI '13, '15, '16) after finals of The Valley Mid-America Cup.

VBI alumni Nina Potischman (Hunter College, NY; VBI '15, '16) and Jack Wareham (Oakwood Secondary School, CA; VBI '13, '15, '16) after finals of The Valley Mid-America Cup.

VBI alumni Oliver Sussman (Cambridge Rindge and Latin, MA; VBI '15, '16) and Sekou Cisse (Success Academy, NY; VBI '16) after finals of The Yale Invitational.

VBI alumni Oliver Sussman (Cambridge Rindge and Latin, MA; VBI '15, '16) and Sekou Cisse (Success Academy, NY; VBI '16) after finals of The Yale Invitational.

 

Nearly two-thirds of debaters currently qualified to the 2017 TOC are VBI alumni. And one-third of all debaters currently qualified to the TOC have attended VBI multiple times.

Debaters from 36 states attended VBI in 2016 and returned to their home circuits with not only new skills, but also new friends from all over the country. They have experienced considerable success on their local, state, and regional circuits. We love to hear how our alumni are doing, so please email us anytime. 

Check out our alumni's results last season.

As successful as our students have been over the past 16 years, things are only getting better as we continue to find new ways to push our curriculum and our students forward. 

This has been a stellar year for VBI alumni. So far, they have won: 

  • The Greenhill Fall Classic* (and Round Robin*)
  • The Valley Mid-America Cup* (and Round Robin) 
  • The New York City Invitational (and Round Robin*)
  • The St. Mark's Heart of Texas Invitational
  • The Minneapple* (and Round Robin*)
  • The Harvard Westlake Tournament* (and Debate.LA Challenge Round Robin)
  • The Barkley Forum for High Schools @ Emory*
  • The Loyola Invitational*
  • The Yale Invitational*
  • The Voices Foundation Invitational (and Round Robin*)
  • The John Edie Holiday Debate Tournament hosted by The Blake School
  • The College Preparatory School Invitational
  • The Lexington Winter Invitational*
  • The Grapevine Classic*
  • The Capitol Beltway Fall Classic
  • The Scarsdale Invitational
  • The Princeton Classic
  • The Longhorn Classic at the University of Texas*
  • The Dowling Catholic Paradigm
  • The Isidore Newman Invitational
  • The Newark Invitational (and Round Robin*)
  • The University of Houston Cougar Classic*
  • The Puget Sound High School Tournament*
  • The Wake Forest Earlybird
  • The Damus Hollywood Invitational*
  • The Central Valley Bear Brawl

(* indicates VBI alumni closeout)

 

Nearly 190 Bids to the TOC

VBI alumni have earned 188 of the 298 bids to this season's Tournament of Champions—dozens more than any other camp.

VBI alumni have not just been winning the most important invitationals this season, they have been filling up elimination brackets at every tournament. Even with students across the country attending dozens of different debate institutes each summer, VBI alumni have earned a solid majority of bids awarded to the Tournament of Champions—more than any other camp in the country. They are consistently on top of the head-to-head debate rankings and the TOC bid list.