The Willamette University Debate Union believes that our advocacy programs should involve more than intercollegiate competition. This belief is the basis of our Public Advocacy Program. Students involved in the Public Advocacy Program take their advocacy skills into a variety of forums on the Willamette University Campus, the Salem Community, and they even take their advocacy skills to Prison.
In the past couple of years, we have sponsored open mics on campus as well as in the community of Salem, campus discussions about various issues, as well as town-hall discussions on the Oregon State Capitol steps. One of our most interesting and popular programs involves with inmates of the Oregon State Penitentiary. We go into Oregon's maximum security prison and participate with the inmates in debates, speech contests, poetry reading and similar events.