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Author Topic: A Plea to Paperless Teams - Respect the Facilities  (Read 2017 times)
max.o.archer
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« on: February 02, 2011, 12:59:08 PM »

With the paperless transition in debate, there seems to be a lot of concern with the way it effects our community.  Much of discussion centers around costs, how it effects the in round experience, and how it effects the administration of tournament.  This post is about the last of these discussions and takes it a step further to consider paperless debate's effect on the academic community as a whole and the host tournament's institution in particular.

This past weekend at the Viking Debates, no less than 5 classrooms on campus had various technologies unplugged, moved or otherwise tampered with to make way for the competitors laptops and printers.  I've fielded emails and phone calls from building staff, faculty and other administrators seeking to discover why this has become a new issue that our campus has had to deal with.  I assured them that this issue was promptly noticed by my tournament staff, that we are working on a solution to avoid the problem next year, and that a few bad apples should not spoil what was otherwise a smooth experience for 100+ other people.  They seem satisfied for now that we have the situation under control, but I think it is prudent to remind everyone of the days of high school debate when such acts were considered vandalism.

I don't want to blow this out of proportion, but I think it does require raising some awareness to remind people that these classrooms are provided by colleges and universities with the expectation that they will be returned at the end of the weekend in the same working condition that they were delivered.  While we did everything we could to put the tech back together, there were inevitably a few rooms that were missed and thus a few professors unhappy with the idea of hosting debates at Augie again.  Thus, I challenge everyone to be more cognizant in the rush to plug in laptops and printers and to take that extra step to avoid tampering with smart classrooms needed to educate students outside of the debate community. 

In the future, Augie (a non-paperless team) will try to provide powerstrips so paperless teams can conveniently power their equipment, but I challenge all coaches and competitors to be a little more responsible with the way they conduct themselves for the sake of future debate tournaments at Augie and elsewhere.

Max Archer
Director of Debate
Augustana College
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SherryHall
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Posts: 1949


« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2011, 01:53:52 PM »

I second this, though I don't think it is exclusively a paperless debate issue.  A lot of paper teams also bring printers and laptops into rooms.  I think everyone needs to be more respectful of the facilities and classrooms in which debate rounds are hosted.  We have found this to be a growing problem at both the college and high school tournaments.

Sherry
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