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Universities select 2024 Regents’ Cup teams for tri-university speech and debate competition

March 23 event to be hosted on ASU's Downtown Phoenix campus

A trophy that looks like a desert plant

The Regents' Cup trophy. Photo courtesy of the Arizona Board of Regents

December 07, 2023

The Arizona Board of Regents has announced the 43 students selected to compete in the fifth annual Regents’ Cup, a tri-university speech and debate competition celebrating free speech.

The Regents’ Cup honors participants for articulating different points of view in an environment where competitors remain civil and respectful. This year’s students represent a wide range of college majors – from political science and economics to philosophy and biology, and they share a unified commitment to practicing free speech and civil discourse. Find the 2024 Regents’ Cup student participants on the ABOR website here.

“Congratulations to all of the students selected to participate in our fifth annual Regents’ Cup,” said Regent Larry E. Penley, who serves as regent advisor for the event, along with Regent Doug Goodyear. “This unique competition showcases students, celebrates the free speech protections our Constitution provides, and honors civil discourse and the respectful exchange of ideas – traits that are at times lacking among our society today.”

This year’s competition – centered on the theme of “Democracy, Justice and the Rule of Law” – is on March 23, 2024, and will be hosted by the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University. Judges — including elected officials, business and community leaders, journalists and educators — volunteer their time to support the Regents’ Cup.

Nearly 140 students from ASU, Northern Arizona University and the University of Arizona applied to represent their university at the Regents’ Cup. Participating student teams will spend the next few months honing their debate skills and crafting persuasive stories with expert guidance from coaches at each university.

The board awards generous scholarships to first-, second- and third-place winners — $15,000, $12,000 and $5,000, respectively. All other team members receive a $500 scholarship. Funds are used at students’ discretion to support and advance their education, and Regents’ Cup participants are eligible to receive internship or course credit for their work.

Arizona’s public universities are exemplars in free speech and are recognized by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education with the highest free speech rating.  

To experience the Regents’ Cup, watch last year’s storytelling winner here and the Oxford debate winner here.

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