Crow Agency, Montana
Steve Llano (St. John’s)
Amber (St. John's)
Yves (St. John's)
Four RMC debaters and 2 debaters from ST John's University and their coach, Steve Llano, traveled to Little Bighorn College to run workshops and have a public debate. The group worked with Gretchen Brein's Communication class at LBHC.
They engaged in a 6-person (3 vs 3) debate about the North Dakota Access Pipeline. The formal debate had arguments from the economic, environmental and philosophical perspectives. After the formal debate, there was a rich discussion about the effect of the pipeline had upon the land and what that would mean to the tribes.
Trainers then ran a small argumentation workshop in a literature class and taught the basic Toulmin model of argumentation. The trainers then asked the students to break up into two groups and come up with arguments in favor of and against deleting social media accounts. We had mini debates in class to explore the different perspectives about this topic..
Overall, the event seemed to be a success. The students were extremely interested in learning about debate and became engaged in the program.
02/15/2017, Fort Peck Community College
Assinibione and Sioux Reservation
Five St John’s students
Four RMC debaters, along with Steve Llano, graduate assistant Emilio Horner, and four debaters from St John’s University traveled to Fort Peck Community College for a public debate and discussion about the keystone and North Dakota pipeline.
Instead of putting on a classroom workshop like originally planned, the debaters sat in on a Native Studies lecture, where they learned about the corruption within Native Councils, the history of oppression of Native Americans, some other issues Native Americans on reservations are facing, and about the healing process within tribes. The debaters also asked the Native students to give their thoughts about the Dakota Access Pipeline in preparation for the debate later. This unique cultural exchange helped students understand more about the tribe and culture.
Later in the evening, the debaters put in a full (8-person) debate about continuation of construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. The debaters went over many different cultural, historical, economic, societal and environmental arguments on both sides of the debate. A lively discussion followed the debate when the students in attendance were encouraged to participate.
The students at the College were extremely engaged with the debaters and enjoyed the debate and discussion.
02/16/2017, Stone Child Community College
Rocky Boy Reservation, Box Elder, Montana
Five ST John’s students
Four RMC debaters, Steve Llano, graduate assistant Emilio Horner and four St. John's students traveled to Stone Child Community College to conduct a public debate and workshop. This would mark the first time that the RMC debate workshop had interacted with this college and the Rocky Boy Reservation. The program was welcomed by the faculty and students at the college who were eager to discuss the issue of pipeline creation.
We hosted a full (8 person) debate for the students and anyone else who wished to attend. The debaters went over many arguments in favor of and against the construction of the North Dakota Access Pipeline, including environmental dangers, preserving Native Culture, the history of Native oppression and colonization and the economic impacts of building the pipeline.
There was a lively discussion following the debate. Students from the program and from Stone Child College were engaged with the topic and wanted to learn more about debate and argumentation. This debate had great attendance and they look forward to future interactions with the debate program.