Monthly Archives: October 2008
Four Linfield students and one professor traded the brisk Oregon weather for a weekend in Honolulu, Hawaii. The group was there for more than lounging on the beach; they were competing in the Oct. 16-20 Pan Pacific Debate Championship.
Linfield was represented by sophomore Colin Jones, junior Kaitlyn Vannoy, seniors Ashley Price and Morgan St. Jean and Associate Professor of Theatre and Communication Arts and Director of Forensics Jackson Miller. Teams from California, Oregon and Hawaii also competed.
Competitors debated topics ranging from the bailout, to legalizing organ sales and the conflict between Georgia and Russia, St. Jean said. This is her eighth year of forensics debate.
St. Jean said this was the first debate for Jones and Price and that they did well.
”We are so new, but we held our own,” St. Jean said. “Each team won two individual rounds.”
The forensics Team started its season off with a first-place win at the Lewis & Clark Pioneer Invitational on Oct. 10-11.
Senior Kate Peterson placed first in the Open Program of Oral Interpretation category.
Peterson said this category is essentially competitive acting using prose, poetry or a script. Her particular piece addressed the use of Christianity as a social tool.
She highlights Brittany Spears’ award acceptance speech thanking God and Kathy Griffin’s 2008 Emmy speech that stated God had nothing to do with her win.
Peterson said she also searched various blogs praising or condemning each speech. She assembled all of the elements to project her message to the judges.
“It’s about getting a message out there,” Peterson said.
This is Peterson’s eighth year of competition. She began competing with her high school forensics team as a freshman.
Despite Peterson’s years of experience in front of the judges, she said she still gets nervous no matter how much she practices.
“You can walk into a room and know that a judge isn’t going to like your piece,” Peterson said.
Even if she does not get a positive response from the judges or a win a tournament, she chooses not to adjust her pieces.
“How many opportunities do you have when people are required to listen to you?” Peterson said.
This is her fourth consecutive first-place win since last fall. The Pioneer Invitational was the first tournament for Peterson since she was abroad in France last spring.
Whether it is in front of the judges or in her personal life, Peterson said speaking with conviction means taking authority for your words.
“A huge portion of America’s youth comes off as unsure of what they are saying,” Peterson said. “Soon, they may not be willing to say anything at all.”
Peterson is also a peer coach for the forensics team, as is senior Morgan St. Jean.
“Kate has worked her butt off,” St. Jean said. “She is a great peer coach, competitor and sets a great model.”
The team heads to Kelso, Wash. Nov. 7 and 8 Nov. 14-16 Linfield will host the Mahaffey Tournament.
The Mahaffey Tournament will draw 40 teams of 5 to 15 debaters from California, Idaho, Washington, Alaska and Oregon.
Forensics encourages anyone, regardless of experience to join. Those interested should e-mail Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Review staff writer
With 11 days until the much anticipated election, students and faculty are continuing to evaluate both presidential candidates’ policies.
On Oct. 21, representatives from the Obama and McCain campaigns were scheduled to speak on behalf of their candidate’s education policies.
Sponsored by the education department, the evening gathering was intended to create a space for students to be informed of their choices in the election, Assistant Professor and Early Education Coordinator Mindy Larson said.
Although Neal Lockhart, Yamhill County chair for the McCain campaign, canceled his appearance because of personal matters, Multnomah County Commissioner Lisa Naito, a volunteer for the Obama campaign, was on-hand to promote Obama’s platform.
She presented Obama as an agent of change who pledges to fund early childhood education with $10 billion each year, to use technology to improve schools, to emphasize greater accountability for teachers and parents and to reform the No Child Left Behind Act.
“McCain’s campaign is looking at vouchers and charter schools, [which is] a move to privatize education,” Larson said, sharing her own knowledge.
Though Obama and McCain have both put forth detailed policies on Pre-K-12 education, students are perhaps more interested in learning the candidate’s policies on higher education.
With rising college costs and a complicated financial aid system, both contenders offer different solutions.
According to his official Web site, Obama will create the American Opportunity Tax Credit to cover the first $4,000 of a college education for most Americans. He also calls for the elimination of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, replacing it instead with a simple check box on tax forms.
McCain’s Web site put forth a plan to simplify higher education tax benefits to ensure that a greater number of families have a lower tax burden when they are helping to send their children to college.
Like Obama, McCain also calls for a simplified financial aid process but with less specific details as to how he would accomplish it.
Those interested in learning about the different candidates’ specific policies are encouraged to visit the Web sites of the presidential nominees.
Review staff writer
The Sparky Awards are annual, national contests to promote the open exchange of information.
The awards are organized by the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition that promotes the universal benefits of sharing ideas of all kinds. This is the first year Nicholson Library has sponsored the contest.
To enter the contest, students form a team or go it alone and make a two-minute video to demonstrate the importance of sharing information.
You can either enter the contest in the library for a $100 award, or the national Sparky Awards for $1,000 or both contests, Instructional Librarian Jean Caspers said.
“If you have an apple, and I have an apple, and we exchange these apples, then you and I will still each have one apple,” the Sparky Awards’ Web site states, quoting George Bernard Shaw. “But if you have an idea, and I have an idea, and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.”
This quotation embodies the purpose of the program, which is to help students start thinking about information sharing.
“It is a chance for students to have fun sharing information and win the prize.” Caspers said.
Nicholson Library display books by professors of many fields, yet the cost of these books sometimes limits the information students can get.
“The journals have become more and more expensive for the library or students to have,” Caspers said. “The question is how to share information in a way people can afford.”
To find a solution, SPARC, along with authors, publishers and librarians, built on the unprecedented opportunities created by the networked digital environment to advance the conduct of scholarship.
The SPARC Web site allows students to search and read journals of professors for free.
“Peer review makes those articles valuable even though they are free to read online,” Caspers said.
Another advantage of student participation in this contest is that they are able to learn different ways to share information more inexpensively.
“A mini-film festival will be shown in the library to find the winner if we have a number of students for the contest,” she said. “It will help students prepare for the national contest as well.”
Caspers has not heard from any students about entering this contest yet.
“It will be fun making a movie over the weekend with friends, or you can do it on your own,” she said.
Students can contact Caspers at email@example.com in the library by Nov. 10 to submit an entry to the local contest for the festival that will be held on Nov. 17.
She suggested students watch last year’s winners to get an idea about the contest.
“Anyone can do it,” Caspers said. “Since this is the first year the library sponsored this contest, the chance is very easy.”
Oregon’s new Smokefree Workplace Law, prohibiting smoking within 10 feet of entrances, exits and windows of workplaces, will go into effect Jan. 1, 2009. Linfield’s Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention Team is discussing ways to implement this law on campus.
“All of our campus is a workplace, so we have to be in compliance,” Health Promotion and Student Wellness Coordinator Christina Ries said.
Linfield enforces a more stringent policy than the state law; it prohibits smoking within 30 feet of campus facilities. The problem, Ries said, is what to do with ashtrays, as the new law requires them to be situated at least 10 feet from workplace buildings, as well.
Linfield’s ashtrays are currently chained to campus’ buildings. Ries said they will be removed by Jan.1, but what will be done with them after that is undecided.
“People are still allowed to smoke on campus, and if we don’t provide an ashtray, we could be creating a mess of campus,” she said.
Jeff Mackay, associate dean of students and director of residence life, said there are options available.
One, he said, is to put them 30 feet from buildings, in accordance with current policy, but the problem is that 30 feet from one building is not often 30 feet from another.
Senior Rose Kelter, a member of ADAPT, said it would be nice to see more attractive ashtrays on campus because they would be less “in-your-face.”
“Some of the nice, attractive [ashtrays] are really expensive,” Mackay said, saying that it is more economical to relocate the old ashtrays than to get new ones.
He also said if they are eliminated, someone will have to be paid to clean up the cigarette butts left around campus.
Ries pointed out that one of the main financial issues surrounding the ashtray problem is that new ashtrays were not budgeted for, and there are no grants to cover the costs.
ADAPT has also been discussing another option: a tobacco-free campus. Last year, Oregon Health & Science University went tobacco-free, and, according to the American Lung Association of Oregon, so will all Portland community colleges by the fall of 2009.
“[Going tobacco-free] would make a very significant statement to [people] who visit campus that we think smoking is unhealthy,” Susan Chambers, adjunct professor of health, human performance and athletics, said.
However, she added that now might not be the best time to implement such a policy because there is not enough general support for going smoke-free.
According to a survey conducted last school year and taken by students, faculty and staff, there is only scattered support for the idea.
“I don’t think we’re having a serious discussion about banning tobacco here yet, above ADAPT,” Mackay said.
Kelter said she agrees banning smoking would be difficult to enforce.
“[It's] hard to stop a behavior, especially because it’s a residential campus,” she said.
While the survey showed only mild support for a smoke-free campus, it also showed that 82.1 percent of campus supports the 30- feet policy. This policy will remain intact, but ADAPT will continue to discuss what to do with the ashtrays, Ries said.
“People think they have a right to smoke,” Ries said. “But people also have the right to breathe clean air.”
Review staff writer
The Linfield branch of Habitat for Humanity has created an opportunity for 12 students to travel to Guatemala during Spring Break to work on a Habitat for Humanity project.
Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit, Christian housing ministry which provides decent, affordable housing for low-income families. The students will help two families build their new homes with other volunteers in their 11-day stay.
Last weekend, the Linfield branch held a banquet at the Cooperative Ministries on 2nd Street to raise money for the trip. The members hosted a dinner and met with the Guatemalan representatives to inform attendees of their progress in the area. The club was able to raise $1,000.
The group going to Guatemala needs to raise $30,000 to afford the trip. The club has already reached the halfway point of its goal but still needs help. There are many opportunities to help get the group to Guatemala.
The club will have a tamale sale, selling handmade Guatemalan tamales by the half-dozen. Orders for chicken or veggie tamales are due Oct. 29 and may be sent to sophomore Lacey Dean at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Habitat for Humanity will also be hosting a three-on-three basketball tournament in early December, though the date is unknown. There will be a $5 entry fee for each player.
Those wishing to help can also be a part of Rent-a-Wildcat, where participants go and help members of the community do yard work and other tasks in return for money that will contribute to the trip to Guatemala.
“Being a part of Habitat for Humanity is a great way to gain perspective on other ways of living; taking a week out of your life helps to change their lives forever,” Dean said.
To get involved with Habitat, you can join the Linfield chapter or go online at www.habitat.org.