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MU Debates!

Manchester faculty members to debate election question 

NORTH MANCHESTER, Ind. – The Manchester University community is built around the free and respectful exchange of ideas.

Even when talking about politics in 2016.

On Wednesday, Sept. 28, four Manchester University faculty members will debate this proposition: The United States needs to change its Constitution more than it needs a new president.

In this Oxford-style debate, Justin Lasser, assistant professor of religious studies, and Christer Watson, professor of physics and Physics Department chair, will take the side in favor of the motion, supporting the idea of constitutional change. Heather Schilling, Education Department chair and director of teacher education, and Leonard Williams, dean of the College of Education and Social Sciences, will be against the motion, arguing for a new president. 

The debate process works as follows: Attendees will first vote on the motion before the debate begins.  Each debater will make a 5-minute opening statement, followed by a Q&A with the panel and audience. Afterward, each debater will make a 2- to 3-minute closing statement.

Attendees will then vote on the motion again, and this vote will determine which team wins the debate.

The presentation is a new “MU Debates!” venture of the Values, Ideas and the Arts program at the University.

The debate is at 7 p.m. in the Jo Young Switzer Center on East Street in North Manchester. It is free and open to the public.

Manchester University, with campuses in North Manchester and Fort Wayne, Ind., offers more than 60 areas of academic study to 1,600 students in undergraduate programs, a Master of Athletic Training, a Master of Pharmacogenomics and a four-year professional Doctor of Pharmacy.  Learn more about what’s available at the private, northern Indiana school at

Sept. 22, 2016