Friday, October 31, 2014

Diplomacy and Decision Making: The Island Simulation

Program Title: Diplomacy and Decision Making: The Island Simulation     Date: September 29th

Staff Member(s): Gabriel Borelli and Dreisen Heath

Staff Member Area(s): CLARK

Were any other student groups/offices/organizations involved?  If so, please list: N/A 

Please provide a brief description of the program:
Professor Gallarotti came to do an activity with us involving citizenship and community building.  It was a simulation from his government class in which everyone involved is “abandoned” on an island and then challenged to form a successful community in order to survive.  Success of the simulation depends on the cooperation and teamwork of everyone involved, though there is no single solution to answer the “survival” question of the activity.  The activity itself, overall, is open-ended, allowing room for creative but nonetheless doable solutions if the hypothetical situation were real. 

Please list any materials/items/supplies needed for the program, as well as an approximate budget:
We ended up using $100 in faculty funding for pizza from Mondo, though the food itself wasn’t necessary for the program and was bought mainly because we held the event at dinnertime.

In your opinion, what made this program such a success?
I honestly don’t think that the program was successful because of the food.  It might’ve drawn a few extra residents to the event, though some didn’t eat and came because the activity itself seemed interesting.  I drummed up a lot of hype among my residents by reminding them every time I saw them and telling them how great Professor Gallarotti was, having gone through one of his classes and done the same activity with him that he did with my residents. I think the fact that Professor Gallarotti is someone who I know and who I have worked with influenced my residents’ decision to come, as they trusted me enough to believe that I would only have asked Professor Gallarotti to come if I knew the activity that we would do would be fun, interesting, and insightful.  Once the event began, the activity just carried itself.  The residents got really into the simulation and had an excellent discussion on community building.  This hypothetical island served as a fun metaphor for the ResLife community on Clark 3, and the residents really enjoyed it.  I think this spin on our community really boosted the event, as a conversation based solely around making Clark 3 a community as a hall would have come across stale and boring.

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