Asha Verma, of Kenmoor Middle School, was named the Matthew H Ornstein Outstanding Debater for the 2018 summer institute.
This marks the first time that a young woman has won the award and the first middle schooler to take home the prize.
Asha is a rising 8th grader and spent this summer's institute in the junior varsity lab (which I co-taught with Alex Green). She was precocious beyond measure, quickly grasping each concept we introduced and helped those around her understand the lessons as well.
She frequently brought laughter to our JV lab (and seemed quite successful at the Uno table as well), reflecting Matthew's notorious sense of humor. After the research component of our summer instruction, Asha came in the next day with a small book of evidence she had compiled the previous night, and ideas for new counterplans and disadvantages she wanted to write. With almost endless questions, and a dedication to taking notes (that she religiously referenced afterwards), she everything an instructor could ask for.
Competitively, she partnered with rising sophomore Steve Mirabello, and dominated the JV division, going undefeated. She and Steve defeated several teams from the Varsity labs in practices before the camp tournament (and during a bye round during the competition).
By winning this award, she has earned the right to attend the Georgetown Day Tournament in late September, a very difficult, Varsity only competition.
Congratulations to the other nominees as well: