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IN THE MEDIA

CTV News | September 2021

FDT’s Founder, Frankie Cena, was invited onto CTV News to speak about the first and only English Leaders’ Debate for this year’s election. This is a great example of how public speaking can be used outside of the classroom in a real-world setting!

CBC News | September 2021

FDT’s Head of Debate, Arsalan Ghaemi, interviewed Leader of the Conservative Party Erin O’Toole as part of CBC News’ Canada Votes 2021 – Face to Face segment. He covers excellent topics, namely the housing market crisis and O’Toole’s planned response to the crisis in Afghanistan.

CBC News | September 2021

Arsalan was invited back onto CBC News to share his follow-up thoughts after partaking in the Face to Face series.

CBC News Vancouver | September 2021

Longtime FDT student Jena Yue was interviewed by CBC News Vancouver to discuss her non-profit organization, Youth Art for Action. We’re so proud of Jena and all of her dedication to this incredible initiative!

 

You can find the full CBC article here!

Our Kids | March 2021

Check out Our Kids‘ annual program guide editor Glen Herbert sharing the 3 things he sees when looking at FDT Academy! Our favourite quote from Glen is, “I just think their motto is so great – find your voice it matters – I think that’s an important lesson that kids do need to learn, and [learning debate at FDT] is a great way for them to do that.”

 

And here is an Our Kids video interview of our founder Frankie Cena!

Cat & Nat | January 2021

Earlier this month, our founder, Frankie Cena, and Director of Business Development, Cathy Cena, joined Canadian authors and podcast gurus Cat & Nat for a live interview on their 6-to-Teen Parenting Community channel via Facebook! Some of the questions that Cat & Nat asked during the interview included:

  • What exactly are public speaking and debating, and what are the differences between them?
  • Why is public speaking and learning to debate important for our children?
  • Are these skills something every child should learn to master?
  • Are there differences in the confidence levels between high school age boys vs high school-age girls? Why are there differences and is there anything we can do to help?
  • What can we do to help foster these skills in our children?

 

Their favourite quote from the interview came from Frankie:

“The dinner table is where this gets fostered. There has to be that moment where you talk to the children and let them respond. You ask them about different things and see what interests them. Or just have them provide opinions on things. It will get to the debate and critical thinking side of things. Just being involved. The dinner table is a great place.” 

 

To sign up for Cat & Nat’s parenting community where you can listen to the full interview, click here. You can also follow this awesome mom duo on their Instagram account!

Kid Carson Show on Z95.3 | September 2020

FDT founder Frankie Cena was interviewed for the Kid Carson Show on Z95.3 as part of their weekly “Big Free Plug” a segment featuring local businesses driven by bright ideas and great stories. Frankie spoke to Kid and Jordan about his journey from a high school debater to the owner of the most successful debate academy in the world. “My mom always said [that] I started off at the kitchen table and made it into a career,” Frankie said.

Even though FDT now teaches students from grades K-12, what students learn is tailored to their experience level. Frankie explained that with our K-3 program “we’re really talking about confidence, having the kids speak out loud, be able to stand in front of an audience and speak confidently. By the time they get to Grade 4-7 they start to debate the more simple topics. Then, by Grade 8-12 they’re talking about global issues.”

Frankie talked about the value of debate – “It applies to every kind of career, every opportunity, every scholarship, every university wants someone who can speak confidently so we’re really giving kids the most important skill.” Frankie spoke about FDT students’ travels to places like Singapore, England and Argentina, where they competed in (and won!) debate and speech competitions. “The kids get to do so many different things. They love it, I love it, and it’s been an amazing career!”

 

Listen to the full interview below!

Marc & Mandy Show | June 2020

The bubbly and fantastic Mariko Zamani from the Marc & Mandy Show, a nationally syndicated TV show, swung by the academy to interview Frankie about what we do at FDT! This segment does a fantastic job of outlining what FDT offers, the age groups that we work with, and the importance of gaining the skills that students learn through public speaking and debate.

 

Our favourite quote from the interview is,

“If you put your child into a sport or piano, they’re going to learn a lot and it’s going to be an amazing skill set, but the transferable skill might not be as wide as Debate. In Debate you’re learning critical thinking skills, confidence, public speaking, and that’s going to transfer to your schoolwork, to your university application, to your job interviews one day.”

 

See below for the full interview!

FDT founder and CEO Frankie Cena named Top 30 under 30 by BC Business | June 2020

We are so proud to announce that FDT’s founder and CEO, Frankie Cena, has been given one of the highest honours in British Columbia. Frankie was named one of the “Top 30 under 30” business leaders in BC by Business Magazine! The honour is well deserved by Frankie, who has been coaching debate for over a decade and last month ran an unprecedented Canada-wide public speaking competition to raise money for food banks in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. Moreover, FDT has recently taken a leadership role among educational organizations in the transition to online teaching.

Frankie spoke to BC Business about his love for public speaking:

‘My mom always says that instead of grabbing a hockey stick, I grabbed a microphone,’ jokes Frankie Cena, who grew up in Burnaby. In Grade 7, Cena entered a mandatory public speaking competition and wound up snagging second place in the city. From there, he joined his high school’s debate team; when not working on his own skills, he volunteered as a coach. 

 

Head to the BC Business website to read the article in full!

FDT Talks about its first ever Speech Competition on CTV! | April 2020

Our Founding Director was on CTV Morning Live Vancouver discussing The FDT Canadian Public Speaking Contest! This was FDT’s first public speaking contest and included over $10,000 in cash prizes to be won. The contest is open to all students in grades 4-12 from across Canada, and FDT will donate $5 to @foodbankscanada for each entry received.

 

See below for the full interview!

Global BC | April 2020

Frankie was on Global BC News discussing The FDT Canadian Public Speaking Contest! This was FDT’s first public speaking contest and included over $10,000 in cash prizes to be won. The contest is open to all students in grades 4-12 from across Canada, and FDT will donate $5 to @foodbankscanada for each entry received.

 

Click below for the full interview!

CHCH Morning Live | April 2020

Frankie was on CHCH Morning Live discussing The FDT Canadian Public Speaking Contest! This was FDT’s first public speaking contest and included over $10,000 in cash prizes to be won. The contest is open to all students in grades 4-12 from across Canada, and FDT will donate $5 to @foodbankscanada for each entry received.

 

Click below for the full interview!

FDT Student & Founder on Breakfast Television | October 2018

FDT debate student Matthew Yu is joined by our founder Frankie Cena on Breakfast Television to discuss his appearance on CBC’s Canada’s Smartest Person! Matthew will participate in the televised competition in November, where he will face off against 11 of the smartest youngsters from across the country! He follows in the footsteps of Frankie who competed on the show in 2016. He is the youngest competitor on the show and the only one from Vancouver!

 

See below for the full interview!

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