Boats and Committees: News from the Trustee

My oh my! There sure has been a lot of excitement floating around campus these past few weeks. I would insert a joke about the mold to the tune of “holy moldy!” or another reference to the “love boat,” but I don’t want to be cliché. Though I am not one of the 350 students who was evacuated from Caroline and Prince George Halls, don’t think I have turned a blind eye to how this disruption has been affecting every facet of this campus community. You may be reading this article from your original residence on-campus, but please realize that we are all still directly affected. When our neighbors are uprooted, our whole campus community is in flux; our family is displaced. All in all, I am extremely proud at the open doors and listening ears that students have been displaying as they rise to help their fellow classmates. And by the time this article is published, the Sea Voyager will be floating in the harbor as the ship and the students get acquainted with their new home for the next few weeks. I feel this is a very ingenious way to deal with an unfortunate situation. Though President Urgo didn’t exactly “buy” us the ship, he and the administration were extremely clever in finding a way to sew the torn piece of cloth back onto the fabric of our home by the river. Let this time be a testament to our resilience as a family unit.

Also, some of you may or may not have heard through the rumor mill about a Public Safety Student Advisory Committee. Well, if you’ve heard, you heard right and it’s on the way. After much dialogue with concerned students and insightful members of administration, I was able to characterize the student-Public Safety relationship as a bit abrasive. Unfortunately, this sentiment was one that existed from the time I joined this community almost four years ago. To remedy this relationship, I came up with the idea of a Public Safety Student Advisory Board that would serve as a permanent mechanism of communication between the student body and Public Safety. It would be a way to aggregate and report student concerns to Public Safety and for them to relay developments back to the student body. This board would be a way to keep both bodies accountable. As of right now, it’s in its last stages of development and I am super excited to get it up and running.

Now, you may be wondering what I’ve been doing amidst all these changes. My main two jobs have been listening and talking. I’ve tried my best to reach out and communicate with anyone who has been affected in any capacity and listen to their stories. Whatever your joys, concerns, or frustrations have been, I have done my best to objectively listen to them all and take down questions that I can then ask to relevant members of administration. Secondly, I’ve been talking. Any information I’ve received I have sent it out to you all as soon as I could. I feel like one of my main objectives was just as simple as making people feel like they were in the loop and connected. I’ve been asking questions and giving you the best answers I could find out. Some members of the press have also contacted me and I’ve done my best to give a well-rounded account of student opinion. As always, if you feel like I can be doing anything better, keep me accountable and let me know! Also, I know that many of you still wonder how a situation this grand could have just cropped up in the middle of the semester. I’ve heard those concerns and they will be addressed as soon as the water settles. I will be sure to let you know what precautionary measures are in place as soon as I find out.

Finally, be on the lookout from a message from Alex Walls, the Student Trustee in Training, about the start of the selection process. This year has been zooming by and before you know it will be time to pick the next Student Trustee! Remember to add Maurielle Student-Trustee on Facebook. I care about each and every one of you. Please let me know what you need from me so I can represent you all in the best way I can!

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