The competitive spirit at UH Bauer College often extends beyond the business arena. Bauer College students represented the college and the University of Houston Forensics Society at the 2008 Vanderbilt University National Invitational Tournament, where they took home top honors.
Management information systems junior Blake Gilson and pre-business sophomore Ben Cohen-Kurzrock won first and second place respectively in two divisions of policy debate.
The UH Forensic Society is the speech and debate team for the University. The group regularly competes in and hosts tournaments focused on the art of debate.
Gilson was a member of the two-man team that claimed the coveted national title in the policy debate. Gilson’s team faced off against students from Louisiana-Lafayette University, the University of Miami, Appalachian State, Emory University and others.
“It was a validation of UH’s policy debate team’s hard work and dedication,” Gilson said. “I hope the victory puts UH back on track to become the debate powerhouse it once was.”
Gilson’s team advanced to the final round against Samford University and managed to take the title without losing a round in the entire tournament. Being a business major gave him the competitive edge over non-business debaters from other schools, Gilson said.
“The accounting courses I took from Dr. Ron Lazer and Neelam Poonawala benefited me the most at this tournament,” Gilson said. “There is no doubt in my mind the knowledge I gained from Bauer directly translated into winning debates.”
Preparing for policy debates is a difficult task, said Cohen-Kurzrock, who took home second in the Novice Division of the tournament.
“Since numerous pieces of our evidence and debate arguments centered around Economics and Accounting, I found micro/macro economics and financial accounting to be an invaluable asset to me during each debate round,” he said.
Both Gilson and Cohen-Kurzrock said they are excited about the growth of the Forensics Society and hope it will be a catalyst in the University’s efforts to reach Tier 1 status.
By Hannah Eastham
About the University of Houston
The University of Houston, Texas’ premier metropolitan research and teaching institution, is home to more than 40 research centers and institutes and sponsors more than 300 partnerships with corporate, civic and governmental entities. UH, the most diverse research university in the country, stands at the forefront of education, research and service with more than 35,000 students.
About the Bauer College of Business
The C.T. Bauer College of Business has been in operation for more than 60 years at the University of Houston main campus. Through its five academic departments, the college offers a full-range of undergraduate, masters and doctoral degrees in business. The Bauer College is fully accredited by the AACSB International – the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. In August 2000, Houston business leader and philanthropist Charles T. (Ted) Bauer endowed the College of Business with a $40 million gift. In recognition of his generosity, the college was renamed the C.T. Bauer College of Business.