Debate Spaces Fellows

Our fellows are a crucial part of Debate Spaces' operations. Typically undergraduate students, fellows have developed our curriculum, assisted at sessions, and furthered our outreach. We hope to invest in all members of the Debate Spaces community. For fellows, that means collaboratively designing a professional experience that will advance their careers and impart skills they hope to gain. Interested in our fellowship program? We usually recruit at the beginning of college semesters, but please feel free to reach our team at

Past Fellows

Tafsia Shikdar | 2019-'20

Tafsia is currently a junior at MIT studying Materials Science and Engineering, with a minor in Political Science. Tafsia currently leads the MIT Debate Team as Co-Captain, having joined as a freshman, and has attended many APDA tournaments along the East Coast. Born and bred in London, Tafsia was initially exposed to debate at age 14, but never had any formal school debate societies to join until reaching MIT. Grateful for the chance to attend the English Speaking Union Debate Academy in 2015, Tafsia looks forward to creating similar opportunities for other young minds!

Maya Benziger | 2019-'20

Hailing from Chicago, Maya is currently a sophomore at Bates College. She is planning on declaring a History and Politics double major with a minor in Music.  Maya is one of two Novice Directors for the Bates College debate team.  She was a novice quarterfinalist at the United States Universities Debating Championship in 2019 and a novice finalist at the North American Women's and Gender Minorities' Debate Championship in 2019 as well.  Before coming to college, Maya did not ever get the opportunity to experience debate so she is excited to be able to share this activity with all the young debaters-to-be!

The fellowship is 12 weeks and runs from about September 28th to December 19th. We ask that you commit 2 hours per week to Debate Spaces (though in the week leading up to the Academy you may spend closer to 4 hours on Debate Spaces) and attend the three Academy sessions. Our sessions in the spring will be held on October 24th, November 14th, and December 5th from 1-4pm EST. Please complete this interest form and we will follow-up with an application!

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