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Local student qualifies for Team USA International Debate Team, first ever from South Texas

Posted at 6:34 PM, Aug 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-29 19:34:07-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — It's the first time ever, that South Texas will be sending a student to compete on the USA Debate Team.

She's only a junior in high school and tournaments have already taken Genevieve Cox to competitions at Harvard University, Yale, and many others. Now she says she's ready to expand her horizons and take her debating career across international waters.

At 16 years old Genevieve Cox has been selected to be on the USA International Debate Team.

Genevieve is the first student from Ray High School and all of South Texas to ever qualify for the team.

For her parents, it's a humbling experience.

“Shocking, it was amazing,” said James Cox, Genevieve’s father.

But for her, it's something she's worked toward for a long time.

“My middle school was lucky enough to have a speech and debate program,” said Genevieve. “It's really important to me to represent not only the people of Corpus but also the marginalized people who I see every day who maybe don't have what other people like I who are very fortunate to have.”

As part of the international team, Genevieve, along with 11 other students from the USA will travel to tournaments around the world for the next year; debating and competing, all in hopes of bringing home as many wins as possible.

“Some of them are international ones like in Croatia, Germany, Singapore, Taiwan, and then others are here in the USA but they are international competitions,” said Genevieve.

She says speech and debate has given her a respect for how others think. And she hopes to take what she's learned and put it to good use with a career in law.

“Either an international lawyer or a criminal defense lawyer and I think the main drive behind that is that I really like to help people and represent them,” said Genevieve. “I really value justice and I really value bringing the truth forward.”

Her dad says, as proud as he is, he just wants to see her pursue something she enjoys.

“I hope she does whatever she wants to,” said Cox. “And now she has the opportunity to serve the country as a member of the USA Debate Team.”

Genevieve will be attending her first tournament in Germany in November. But before that, she'll be getting some special training in Dallas, from national speech and debate hall of fame coaches. Everyone at KZTV wishes her the best.