DCHS Students Selected for Harvard Residency

Two DCHS Students Selected for Harvard Diversity Project
Posted on 08/18/2021

Two Douglas County High School students beat out thousands of applicants to help fulfill their dreams of making Harvard Debate Council history. Brittany Brown and Natalie Martin are among 25 elite students selected for a summer debate residency at Harvard as part of the Harvard Debate Council Diversity Project. The DCHS students are making history as the first students ever selected from Douglas County.

The Harvard Debate Council Diversity Project is an official Harvard program that cultivates scholars to pursue studies at elite colleges and universities. Students are taught by the college’s assistant debate coach and exposed to higher-level academic disciplines such as philosophy, political science, humanities, and rhetoric.
The program includes 34 weeks of instruction which culminates in an intensive two-week summer residency at Harvard. Scholars will then debate alongside students from around the world.


Natalie Martin

Natalie Martin has been interested in debate and has Ivy League aspirations. She hopes to attend Harvard University for undergraduate studies and Georgetown University for Law School before starting a law firm. When the DCHS junior saw young African American students in the project competing at such high levels, it inspired her. “I looked at these students that looked like me. I said, ‘I know I can do this.’ It happened, and I am very proud of myself,” Natalie says.   


Sophomore Brittany Brown is also excited for the opportunity to hone her debate skills. “Throughout the interview process, I began feeling less pressure and more of a sense of excitement. I knew I was reaching my maximum potential. I began feeling like the best version of myself. I was nervous throughout my first interview, but the nervousness quickly turned to excitement,” Brittany exclaims. After she graduates from DCHS, Brittany plans to attend Harvard or the University of California at Berkeley. She then plans to attend law school. 


Brittany Brown

Executive Director Kellye A. Britton says both Douglas County students possess the ability to communicate with ease. She says they were able to communicate expertly throughout the arduous three-round selection process. “Our Ivy league collegiate level program includes a rigorous selection process which includes family interviews. Both Douglas County students were confident communicators throughout the selection process,” she explains.

Douglas County School System Superintendent Trent North says he is proud to have not one but two Douglas County students accepted into the highly competitive program. “Their success is a testament to the hard work that these students have put in,” he says. “It also speaks to the amazing quality of education happening every day in our school system. We are excited to celebrate with these young ladies and to witness their transformation throughout the program.”

For more information on the Harvard Debate Council Diversity Project, visit https://harvarddcdp.org/.

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