POTE Debate Club – debate group for medical students in Pécs


2024. 02. 23.

The POTE Debate Club was started based on student ideas in the spring semester of 2023 at the Pécs Medical School, for medical students who wish to improve their debate skills. Aside from participation in a great community and getting to know new people, the group provides an opportunity for developing social skills that could be used in work as a doctor efficiently.

Written by Hanga Kovács

The goal of the newly started program is to provide sufficient framework for those medical students, who wish to improve their social and debate skills. Aside from being a good communication tool, debate as a genre could be useful in situations like consultation with patients and their families in clinical work.

The program was created by Kristóf Roskó (4th year), Kata Váradi (3rd year), Eszter Édes and Bulcsú Egyed (6th year) medical students. As we have learned from Kristóf Roskó, they are developing a thematic for each semester; topics are fundamentally about questions is medical ethics, and scientific and moral questions in medicine, like abortions or the medical use of marihuana. Moreover, various games are also added to the event series.

But what does a debate evening look like?

The debate evenings follow the style of British parliamentary debates: there are two groups, representing the pro and contra sides of a topic. Participants are divided into two group, who first discuss the view they are taking among themselves. After introducing the topic, they determine the basics of the debate, followed by elaboration on the thesis and the debate itself.

The conclusion or determination of the winning side is not important, since the emphasis on developing debate skills. Moderators are satisfied when everyone has shared their points of view and have supported their opinions during the debate; however, students wishing for feedback can of course receive it. The personal view of the participants does not have to adhere to the view they represent in the debate, but it can be shared with the other participants – emphasizes Kristóf Roskó.

Debate evenings are organised weekly. On odd weeks, students can meet in a more informal, casual setting, usually in a Pécs restaurant or pub. However, the topic is set. On even weeks, the event is more formal, located in the new theoretical building of the Pécs Medical School.

Aside from these, more events are expected with the support of the Hungarian Student Council (HÖK), for example guest lectures, trips abroad and international debate competitions.

The debate club is mostly aimed at medical students, but organisers also welcome faculty staff. They have also explained that they would like to open the debate club for international students as well, where the debates would happen in English.

Debate evenings continue in spring 2024

In the spring semester of the 2023/2024 academic year, the POTE Debate Club awaits students who would like to improve their debate skills and practice diverse reasoning, or would like to be part of a great community where aside from getting to know more people they can also participate in various social events and trips abroad.

The Debate Club of the Pécs Medical School is worth a follow on their social media platforms.