These intelligent Atlanta teens have accomplished a historical feat as we now know them as “The Atlanta Great Debaters.”
According to 11Alive, Madison Webb and Christian Flournoy — high school students and participants in the Harvard Diversity Project — snagged a victorious win for their third consecutive year at the prestigious Harvard University Debate Competition.
Both Webb and Flournoy made history as the first Black female student and youngest Black boy to come out of the competition victorious. Together they beat out students from over 25 countries around the world.
As part of the Harvard Diversity Project, the two teens have helped the program gain notoriety and strengthen its reputation for what 11Alive reports as “positioning Black youth to receive full scholarships to Ivy League and elite colleges and universities.”
Each year the program recruits a new group of 25 talented students in the metro Atlanta area to participate in the debate competition. For the first time due to COVID-19, the competition was held virtually.
The pipeline program “targets high school students who have never been exposed to academic debate,” 11Alive reports. Assistant debate coach Brandon Fleming — founder of the educational equity initiative — helps to train them.
While the program has been running for three years, it has been known to position teens — like Webb and Flournoy — to receive full scholarships for Ivy League Institutions and other colleges and universities.
The work of his program and dedication from these talented students are proving to be a success for the Black community as it paves the way for others to follow.