There were roughly 120 participants, each student having to qualify through their respective country prior to competing at this World tournament. Ruby qualified for this tournament after placing 3rd in Canada at the Senior National Public Speaking World Qualifiers earlier this year.
Participating countries included Australia, Hong Kong, Canada, the United States, England, South Africa, Lithuania, Pakistan, Cyprus, Argentina, Botswana, Israel, India, South Korea, Zimbabwe and Germany.
With 4 am wake-up calls to get into the right time zone, Ruby met new and friendly faces from across the globe through her computer screen. After four days of competition, Ruby Grinberg was crowned the 2021 Grand Champion! This is the first time a York student has won this prestigious award (while the debate trophy case holds reminders of many proud accomplishments over the years, this is the first WIDPSC cup) and we are proud of her determination, four years of hard work and passion.
For prepared events, Ruby wrote her persuasive speech on the unethical practices of mass-farming coconuts, and the toll farming has on the environment as well as the farmers themselves.
Ruby’s interpretive reading piece was a Roald Dahl rhyming tale in which Ruby used voices and impressions to bring the story to life. She also competed in impromptu speaking and debate events, having limited prep time prior to delivering speeches for a panel of judges.
In the words of debate coach and teacher Mr. Burkett, “Becoming the best takes a great deal of effort, but if you're passionate, the effort is an enjoyable one. I've watched Ruby grow and improve at every tournament she's gone to over the years and couldn't be more proud of our fearless leader. What a way to conclude a remarkable high school career. I hope you are all inspired by her example. Ruby is leaving the future of our speech and debating programme in great hands...I'm just sorry she missed out on going to Korea!”
Congratulations, Ruby, the world champ! She thanks Mr. Burkett for his coaching, guidance and mentorship throughout her years at The York School.