Rider University

Summer Debate Camps

Teaching public speaking, persuasion, presentation skills and confidence through the art of debate

Capitol Debate is pleased to offer our one of our most popular debate camps in New Jersey, located at the beautiful 280 acre enclosed Rider University at Lawrenceville Township, just outside of Princeton, New Jersey. Rider University provides students with over 70 choices of undergraduate majors and over 40 graduate-level degree programs in business administration, education, liberal arts, sciences, music, fine and performing arts, counseling, as well as human services and leadership.

Summer Camps at Rider University

  • Public Speaking and Debate Camp
    July 28 to August 9, 2019
    Cost: 3,499 $2999 if registered by April 1*
  • At our Public Speaking and Debate Camp level, middle school and high school students will learn the fundamentals of public speaking and argumentation, enabling them to develop core presentation and debating skills that boost confidence and self-esteem. Students at the Public Speaking and Debate Camp level will work on effective public speaking and argumentation, allowing them to further advance their presentation and debate skills to prepare them for the real world. The camp offers students the chance to improve their communication skills in a safe and secure environment while having fun! Complete description »

    *Cost covers tuition, room & board. Commuter program discounted by $600 and does not include breakfast.


  • One Week Summer Debate Rookie Camp
    July 28 to August 4, 2019
    Cost: 1,899 $1799 if registered by April 1*
  • Rookie debaters will first be introduced to public speaking. Students will prepare, organize, and present a speech in front of their peers. Our experience has shown that such exercises best develop, stretch, and solidify a child's understanding and grow their abilities in the core skills we are teaching. Rookie debaters will also be introduced to the foundational principles of debate such as structuring an argument, backing it with evidence, researching, writing cases, and planning defenses. Complete description »

    *Cost covers tuition, room & board. Commuter program discounted by $300 and does not include breakfast.


Group rates available for community, church, international and school groups. Contact us at (800) 450-5012 for more information.
Cost excludes $75 charge assessed for safety regulations, local and federal governmental compliance. Please note that all program prices are subject to change without notice

Our Camp Parents Have Spoken!

Here's what they said about Capitol Debate's Summer Camps.
data from 2017 parent survey

Students had Fun
Students Learned a Lot
Want Students to Return
Recommend camp to their friends

See for Yourself the Impact of Our Summer Camps!

Not only will Capitol Debate students learn new skills through our programs; they will feel an increase in self-worth, learn critical thinking skills and improve public speaking and communication skills with their peers. Two weeks at camp will result in lifelong friendships and memories that will resonate with our students throughout their academic, personal and professional careers. Campers return to our program year after year because of how life-changing our Summer Debate Camps prove to be. Our parents will tell you themselves that they proudly stand by their investment in Capitol Debate because of the impact it has had on their families.

Rider University Camp Reviews

Activities & Schedule

Capitol Debate is the nation's leading expert in teaching communication skills to middle school and high school students. Our nationally recognized staff has hundreds of years of pedagogical experience in helping youth find their voice. Thousands of shy students have walked through our doors in our nearly 20 years of summer camps to become confident young adults and leaders in their community.

Typical daily Schedule

  • 7:30 a.m. - Rise and shine!
  • 8:00 a.m. - Breakfast
  • 8:30 a.m. - Commuter check in
  • 8:45 a.m. - Morning announcements
  • 9:00 a.m. - Leadership exercise
  • 9:30 a.m. - Morning lesson
  • 10:30 a.m. - Small group exercises
  • 11:30 a.m. - Get up and speak
  • 12:00 p.m. - Lunch
  • 1:00 p.m. - Hands-on class time
  • 2:30 p.m. - Team building exercises
  • 3:30 p.m. - Practice
  • 5:00 p.m. - Dinner
  • 6:00 p.m. - Study Hall
  • 7:00 p.m. - Commuter check out
  • 7:00 p.m. - Recreational activities
  • 9:00 p.m. - Residential unwind hour
  • 10:00 p.m. - Room check and curfew

Activities outside of the classroom include:

  • Field trip
  • Talent show
  • Spa night
  • Movie night
  • Field Day
  • Karaoke night
  • Leadership Activities
  • Team building exercises

The Capitol Advantage

Expert Staff

We have a group of accomplished educators who have taught and competed for years. Our instructors are on the leading edge of debating & public speaking. Click here to view our full staff listing.

Top of the Line Curriculum

Our programs draw students from around the world because we focus on our resources year round to ensure that we can bring the best information to our students. Our curriculum focuses on theory and application to provide results that you will be able to see as they become better, more confident speakers.

Convenient Locations

Capitol Debate’s academic summer camps are spread across the United States, from East to West as well as internationally. With such a large number of location available you're bound to find the perfect camp location for you.

  • Low faculty to student ratio – Capitol Debate firmly believes in individualized instruction, which can only happen with small class sizes.
  • Personalized Instruction – Capitol Debate instructors give students hands-on instruction with researching, writing, speaking and organizing. After practice debates, instructors give students lengthy feedback to help them improve their skills.
  • Senior faculty oversee all classes – Unlike other debate camps, Capitol Debate’s instructors have an average of 15 to 30 years of pedagogical experience in the classroom. Many have coached national champions!
  • Practice, Practice, Practice – We make sure students are not just sitting in lectures, but instead are getting up and speaking every day and applying the lessons learned in a small group setting.

Expert Staff

  • Chuck McCarthy

    Camp Director

  • Chuck McCarthy has held multiple roles at Wall Hall School in Wall, New Jersey from AP American History Teacher to National Honors Society Faculty Advisor to Social Studies/ROTC Department Chairperson…  Read More »

  • Shirley Wu

    Camp Wellness / Nurse

  • I have been a nurse for 17 years and have had the pleasure of spending the last 4 of those years working in a school setting. After obtaining my Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree from Providence C…  Read More »

  • Chuck Nicholas

    Camp Instructor

  • Since 1985 Chuck has coached all forms of debate as well as High School & Middle School Mock Trial. He also directs plays. At the 2016 NSDA SLC Nationals , he co-coached the 8th place South Carolina…  Read More »

  • Marissa Pena

    Camp Instructor

  • Born & raised in South Texas, Marissa Pena has been teaching high school speech & debate in the Houston area since 2015, specializing in individual events and Congressional Debate. She has coached a …  Read More »

  • Daniel Bronson

    Camp Instructor

  • Daniel Bronson is currently a high school social studies teacher and debate coach at Dover High School in Dover, New Jersey. He teachings Advanced Placement Government and Politics. He has earned a Ma…  Read More »

  • Ruby Nunez

    Camp Instructor

  • Although her focus of study is in the sciences, Ruby Nunez has been involved with the debate community throughout her academic career. While in high school she participated with the Denver Urban Debat…  Read More »

  • Daniel Austin

    Camp Instructor

  • Daniel Austin is a middle school social studies teacher in Piscataway, NJ, where he frequently incorporates debate and public speaking activities into the ancient and medieval history curricula. A lif…  Read More »

  • Michael Perry

    Camp Instructor

  • As a member of the Instructional Team at Capitol Debate, Michael Perry is passionate in his desire to help students develop important life skills that will have a positive impact on their educational …  Read More »

  • Robert Adanto

    Camp Instructor

  • Robert Adanto is excited to be teaching at Capitol Debate this summer. While competing for Arizona State University Forensics, Robert became the first Sun Devil to win an individual event national cha…  Read More »

  • Kinny Torre

    Camp Instructor

  • Kinny Torres competed in policy debate for three in high school, where he was the captain of his policy team and won several tournaments in the Washington State Area. In college, he competed in Parli…  Read More »

  • Gail Nicholas

    Camp Instructor

  • Gail Nicholas has coached speech and debate for over 30 years at Bob Jones Academy where she teaches American Government. For over a decade she has served as the district chair for the National Speech…  Read More »

  • Jessica Beckett

    Camp Instructor

  • Jessica Beckett, a full-time secondary English teacher, has motivated and prepared students to compete in Model United Nations and Public Forum as a Head Debate Coach for the past year. Before that, s…  Read More »

  • Grace Findley

    Camp Counselor

  • Grace Findley is a senior at Boca Raton Community High School where she has served as Public Forum captain since her junior year. She has reached elimination rounds at tournaments such as Harvard, Nov…  Read More »

  • Benjamin Hanson

    Camp Counselor

  • Benjamin Hanson is currently attending Western Kentucky University with the intent to double major in political science and economics. While in high school he was the captain of his school's Publi…  Read More »

  • Hope Arnold

    Camp Counselor

  • Hope Arnold competed in Public Forum debate both at Howard High School and Capitol Debate in high school. She is the co-founder and former Public Forum captain of Howard High School's Speech and D…  Read More »

  • Jennifer Huang

    Camp Counselor

  • Jennifer Huang debated for 4 years at Ridge High School and was the Captain of LD Debate team her senior year.

    She won 2nd place in Parliamentary Debate at both the National Yale Invitational an…  Read More »

  • Philipp Reutter

    Camp Counselor

  • Philipp Reutter, a senior at Boca Raton Community High School, serves as Vice President of his debate team. Over four years of Public Forum debate, he has collected 4 Gold and 4 Silver Bids to the Tou…  Read More »

  • Olivia Adams

    Camp Counselor

  • Staff member biography coming soon.

  • Morgan Moore

    Camp Counselor

  • Morgan Moore debated with the Shipley School Debate team for three years and was co-captain of the team during her sophomore and juniors years of high school. She has years of experience with the Linc…  Read More »

  • Nicole Sandoval

    Camp Counselor

  • For the last four years, Nicole Sandoval has competed in Public Forum debate. She has attended multiple national tournaments and serves as an officer for her school’s debate team. Notably, she repre…  Read More »

  • Griffin Badalamente

    Camp Counselor

  • One of the oldest members of the Capitol Debate family, Griffin Badalamente debated public forum with Capitol Debate for 7 years, his first tournament being middle school nationals in 6th grade. Griff…  Read More »

Please note that all payments are nonrefundable. Should cancellation be necessary, full credit will be provided up to 1 year from the date of the event, if written notice of cancellation is provided prior to May 1st for camps and at least two weeks for other programs. Any add-ons, tournament or fees paid cannot be refunded and are non-transferrable. Summer camp cancellations received after May 1st or programs cancellations after two weeks prior to program starting must also be made in writing and will follow the cancellation credit timetables. For more details please visit our Terms, Policies, and Conditions page.