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Using Speech & Debate to Propel an Idea Forward

9 Mar 2020 6:04 PM | Anonymous member

Alabama-based Acclinate Genetics Partners with the National HBCU Speech & Debate Association to Tackle Health Disparity Among Minorities

Speech and debate is a skill, one studies and practices much like that of a sports athlete. The mental and emotional endurance required for students participating in a national speech & debate championship rivals that of athletes on the field. Their competitive advantage - words. Pair that with a meaningful problem worth solving and a movement begins.

A movement, that is what Acclinate Genetics is creating through their efforts to include, engage, and educate minorities on the serious topic of health disparities. An issue debated at the National HBCU Speech and Debate Championship held February 28-March 1, 2020 at Prairie View A&M University in Prairie View, Texas.

“Partnering with the National HBCU Speech & Debate Association amplifies our voice,” said Tiffany Jordan, Director of Strategic Partnerships at Acclinate Genetics. “It empowers minority students who are passionate about impacting change to vocalize the importance of having conversations regarding difficult topics but to also present solutions to problems worth solving.”

The National HBCU Speech and Debate Association is primarily funded by the Charles Koch Foundation.  The 2020 national competition attracted over 150 students, with over 350 entries.

“Speech and debate challenges students to analyze issues from various perspectives, create  solutions, passionately advocate their positions, and leverage their skills of persuasion to influence  others,” said Executive Director, Christopher Medina. “ Our students are presented with difficult  topics and the topic of health disparities is extremely relevant and poignant, given the global rise of precision medicine.”

Recently the FDA and NIH have focused their attention on the importance of diversifying clinical trials and genomic research. Acclinate Genetics is prepared to deliver educated,

minority clinical trial participants who have historically been left out. Yet, the solution to this problem goes beyond technology and policy that demands diverse representation.

“To be included in the conversation around the efficacy of medications, the process to engage in a clinical trial, and the future health of our country and world is a trust problem, “ adds Jordan. “To be invited to the table and heard is so important. As a minority-owned small business founded in Alabama, a state with a difficult past in regards to clinical trials, we are ready to change the narrative.”

The partnership between Acclinate and the National HBCU Speech & Debate Association is planned to grow and expand and include other minority-serving institutions including Latino, Tribal, and Asian American associations. Together they will expand the historic tradition of HBCU exceptionalism and societal equity through speech and debate excellence, free speech, and civic engagement.


Contact Information:

Tiffany Jordan, Director of Strategic Partnerships


About Acclincate Genetics: Acclinate Genetics helps biopharmaceutical companies and contract research organizations achieve the most representative research sample by expanding their genomic studies and clinical trials to include diverse ethnic groups. Their Enhanced Diversity in Clinical Trials (e-DICT) is a HIPPA compliant platform that utilizes artificial intelligence, machine learning, and predictive analytics to automate the identification, education, engagement, and retention of willing & diverse clinical trial participants. The result is a ready supply of willing, educated, and diverse participants for genomic research and clinical trials. Their unique system helps decrease the overall cost of drug development and increase the speed of FDA approval. Learn more at Connect on LinkedIn.

About National HBCU Speech & Debate Association: The National HBCU Speech and Debate Association is committed to providing students and educators, at Historically Black Colleges and Universities the skills and training necessary for leadership development in traditional and emerging career fields; positioning them for personal and professional excellence. The Association prepares students for professional/graduate level education through enhancement of research, analytical, organizational, and critical thinking skills; increasing appreciation for the arts, global awareness; and the communication of current events, literature, and creative thought, through performance and free speech.

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