Saferide Feature

“You Drink. We Drive.” Perhaps the most popular updates circulating through the waves of all student emails, the weekly SafeRide message to students often includes witty parodies of popular songs edited to rock the best of SafeRide experiences.

Those who frequent The Green Door are familiar with the sight of the large van at the end of the night, those which run from 10pm to 2am on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, in addition to certain selected weekends of special events. The van is often a saving grace to many students waiting out in the cold for a ride.
The student-run organization, headed by Acting Manager Serra Erbas and supervised by Lisa Cote (Coordinator of Orientation Service Programs), also employs friendly student drivers to collect Door-goers and safely return them to their residence on campus.

The organization consists of five supervisors, Taylor Schafer, Brian Oakey, Becca Hammersla, Victoria Gottleib, and Cetin Sari. The drivers, who are available on-call during running nights, often make multiple runs to the Door per night.

“I love the Door, too,” said one SafeRide supervisor, Taylor Schafer, “so I want other students to be able to enjoy it safely. It’s awesome talking to students I’ve never met before in the van. Most students are really appreciative so it makes us feel like we are really being of service to others, which is SafeRide’s ultimate goal and reason for existing.”
According to the recently released statistics, SafeRide successfully transported over 1,500 riders this past fall semester, with about 22 riders per night. The busiest night of the week recorded in these stats is Wednesday, with Halloween as the busiest night of the semester. Running for 13 weeks and 54 nights, SafeRide assured safe trips back to campus for each of its many passengers.
With its friendly and relatable student workers and leadership, SafeRide provides a dependable and appealing method of transportation from the Door, and has become one of the most widely used on-campus services at St. Mary’s.

As their weekly emails often conclude, “Peace, love, and SafeRide”.

50 Days: A Graduation Institution that Doesn't Ring Hollow

I arrived at the State House up on historic campus at about 6:30 pm on Friday evening. 50 days had already been in full swing for an hour and a half, with only with only a half hour left to go. The very nice mid-range wine selection available would be depleted without a doubt. My hair has been tousled and inflated by the late March rain of earlier, and I have not and will not unzip my black windbreaker, making me a drab dot of under-dressedness in the sea of floral frocks and crisp men’s jackets. ‘Why am I here?’ I ask myself. Up until 20 minutes ago, I had no specter of an idea when 50 days was going to be, and I didn’t particularly care.

This, of course, was entirely my own problem. My college career has for the most part been a story of finding what worked and sticking with it. That goes for my major, my friends, and most of my extracurriculars. Even if I branched out, at the center was always the same core group of people, the same clubs and the same work. So I was utterly unsentimental about the whole idea of 50 days, and that’s not typically the case with me. Just reading my previous articles, anyone could probably piece together I’m soft as a marshmallow about everything from this school to gum on the bottom of my shoes. But I had done 100 days, it was fine. If I wanted to hoist a glass with people I would miss, I could do it in the comfort of my own home, with nobody but those I cared about most. I wondered, what could another milemarker in the seemingly endless funeral march of my college years possibly be to me. And as I have so many times at SMCM, I turned out to have underestimated the whole thing.

As I pull up to the State House, I get a text from my friend and housemate, Maggie. ‘I saved a glass of wine for you’ she writes. Sure enough waiting outside in the hedge circled patio is Maggie, glass in hand, with my editor and friend Jacob. I toss it back gratefully, though hardly gracefully. I look at the stemmed glass she has handed to me, on it is printed ‘St. Mary’s College of Maryland, Class of 2015’, in that recognizable font. They’re a gift from the Alumni Foundation, and I’m there just in time to get my own from Kelly Schroeder. By now, looking at the lovely token, I’m glad that I came at least to get this.

When I return to my friends, Maggie pulls out her phone and shows me a picture, our signatures one after another. It’s a picture of our names in the Book, the book every student signs at the end of orientation, something that puts you side by side with countless students to come before and after you. Maggie knew our names were together, she reminds me, because we stood together in line at the statehouse that day. It was the first day we ever really bonded, became close. Maggie was the first friend I made when I came here. And as I think back, suddenly I’m overcome. How lucky I am to have a friend so thoughtful that she would make sure I can enjoy a glass of wine at 50 days, that she would make sure I got to see my name in the Book, even when my own boneheadedness would otherwise prevent it.

Maggie leaves, and I continue into the statehouse to see what the scene is like exactly. I missed Jemile, our class president, speaking earlier. Later Jacob tells me he heard the class was pretty well behaved during her speech compared to other years, and he points out this probably goes to show how much respect Jemile commands. I see a line of students gathered around the Book, and I see my friends Sarah and Nnenna, signing under the page marked March 27, 2015, a page for the students who made it to the end. I didn’t even realize a page like that existed, and I sign my name beneath them. I have to admit, even in this moment, there’s some amount of pride in seeing this come full circle. I think of my friend who decided to opt out of coming, someone who worked hard to get to that place, and how much he deserves to be along side all of us, and I scribble his name in too, in a bizarre, childlike scrawl that I think he would appreciate.

I return to campus with Sarah and Nnenna, and my 50 days is ended. Later that afternoon, the one or two pictures of me with people I met there trickle in, and even with my boots muddied and my hair aflutter, I’m grateful to have these pictures with these particular people. People like Sarah, my wonderful roommate from junior year, and Nnenna, with whom I have fond memories of nights on the couch with a movie or her DS. With Rachel, who I met freshmen year trying out for choir, and sang with in the hall as I waited. With Abiola, whom I met only this January, and who has never failed to greet me warmly since. And with Kelsey, who became my friend after a stint in the Fall play.

So many people with little parts in my college life, and yet they really had left their mark. I was filled with regret that I hadn’t tried harder to find more people I had known, that I hadn’t taken the opportunity to make one more memory with them, but it’s a mistake I don’t plan to recreate. Going forward, I will cherish moments like 50 days, moments to celebrate the people you may not have known well, but who still made an impact on you with their kindness, humour and those lucky moments when your paths crossed for something brief but special to happen.

But then again, I am a marshmallow.

Whistleblower Policy Gains Attention

“Our office became increasingly aware of a lack of awareness;” said Director of Human Resources Catherine Pratson about the college’s whistleblower policies.

In 2003, the State of Maryland passed the whistleblower protection act. This legislation, according to the state’s official informational brochure, protects state employees’ ability to reveal information “that the employee reasonably believes evidences an abuse of authority, gross mismanagement, or gross waste of money; a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety; or a violation of law.” The idea behind the law is that people could be dissuaded from reporting such things for fear of retribution from their superiors. The law allows people to seek remediation if they feel that they have been punished for revealing unsavory information.

St. Mary’s adopted its own whistleblower policy in 2012. The college’s policy makes use of a 3rd party vendor, EthicsPoint, who receives, handles, and passes on reports. An important aspect of the college’s system is that no college organization or employee has any role in the reporting process; reports sent to EthicsPoint are forwarded directly to the State Attorney General’s office. If the office finds that the report is viable, the college simply receives a notice that the office is investigating a report.

According to Pratson, the EthicsPoint has received four reports since 2012, 2 reports involved human resource issues, 1 report was empty, and 1 report involved a sexual misconduct issue that was addressed through existing systems. The Human Resources department is striving to publicize the whistleblower policy and make it more easily accessible. The all student email titled “Whistleblower Announcement” that came out on March 9 was the first of what is now going to be an annual reminder. In addition to raising awareness about the policy among existing employees, new employees are receiving increased training in order to ensure that the entire college staff is familiar with the whistleblower policy.

College employees can submit reports through the SMCM Whistleblower Site or by calling 855-481-6236; an independent hotline operated by EthicsPoint. This policy applies to any member of SMCM personnel or any person who interacts with the college.

The Waning of Sweet Briar: A Cautionary Tale

On March 3, Sweet Briar College abruptly announced that they would be closing at the end of the academic year after more than a century of offering a female liberal arts education. Citing “insurmountable financial challenges,”officials at the school announced to students and faculty that an $84 million endowment was not enough to save the school, according to the Washington Post.

The Board of Directors voted unanimously to close the college and stated, “We voted to act now to cease academic operations responsibly, allowing us to place students at other academic institutions, to assist faculty and staff with the transition and to conduct a more orderly winding down of academic operations,” according to Paul G. Rice, the board chairman.

In an all-student email on March 5, Vice President for Enrollment Management and Dean of Admissions Gary Sherman said that St. Mary’s College was already in contact with Sweet Briar and would be visiting with prospective transfers on their campus this month. St. Mary’s is one of over 150 colleges that have visited the campus to try to attract the scores of lost students looking for another institution, eager to profit from Sweet Briar’s misfortune.

However, even as the college’s assets are divided up, a new alumnae group Saving Sweet Briar has raised $3 million and threatened the school with legal action unless it makes its finances public, according to the New York Times, although administrators at the school insist that the school will close despite their actions. They claim that Sweet Briar would need a $250 million endowment to survive the financial crisis and that considered alternatives, such as becoming coed or merging with another school, are not viable.

The activists, however, are not convinced. Tracy Stuart, a 1993 graduate, said, “Something doesn’t smell right. You just don’t close a college like that without warning.” History professor Katherine A. Chavigny sees the college as a victim of years of mismanagement and says that the board “just threw in the towel.”

It remains to be seen how the saga of Sweet Briar College will turn out, it should serve as a clear warning to our administrators. As a graduating senior, I have seen three college presidents, five Public Safety Directors, and so many other administrative changes that it feels like hiring at this school is similar to a game of russian roulette with every fifth hire ending up “moving on to new opportunities.” I was here during the budget deficit when low enrollment cost the college $3.5 million in tuition fees. The college’s current crisis has left the student community reeling from the gross mishandling of the mandatory sexual assault training that was found to have violated IRB standards.

Despite all of this, I am hopeful about our current administration’s potential. Admissions numbers are up, Dr. Jordan has proved to be an impressive new president, and we don’t have any students living on a cruise ship. However, I hope that we can see Sweet Briar’s downfall as a cautionary tale. As a fellow small liberal arts institution, we are just as vulnerable to death by mismanagement. We can only hope that our administration will be more transparent if we were to suffer the same fate as Sweet Briar.

English Forum

On Friday, February 27th, the English department held “Career Paths for English Majors”, the first ever SMCM English-focused jobs panel. The forum was headed by Prof. Christine Wooley, Chair of the English department, and was held in the Upper Monty Commons. Five SMCM alumni, ranging from the most recent class of graduates back to the class of ’05, were invited to speak about how their English degrees translated into the workforce post-college. That can be a big help in answering the haunting “what do you do with a B.A. in English?” question. (And as this is being written by an English major, I’d like to know myself.)

Dr. Wooley said she went out of her way to find alumni that occupied different careers from the first associations one might predict for an English student—absent from the panel were any teachers or novelists, poets or publishers. Present was a legal secretary, an RN/midwife, a technical writer from Booz-Allen, an HR and PR specialist, and an ’08 graduate who ended up in software design. The wide range of jobs represented at the panel show part of what St. Mary’s faculty are always championing—what even Dr. Wooley said in her opening remarks: a liberal arts education helps you adapt to any career.

One of the main themes that came out of the panel was the idea that your passions don’t have to be limited to what you do in your day job. Graduates who today find themselves in more technical fields say they use their communication skills on the job more than anything, and find outlets for their creativity in their personal lives—the writer for Booz-Allen said she found her job very engaging, and then in her free time wrote personally and for guest columns in her local paper. It’s not the most rose-colored view of life as an ex-English student, but it is a realistic and grounding one. Seeing a spread of viable options can be even more heartening for students who fear surviving post-graduation, since they’re constantly told that pursuing what they love and what they’re good at is a path to destruction.

Wooley and panelists also warned students about taking on extreme career paths with the thought of a big payday at the end. One panelist spoke specifically on how the law-track, which many English students turn to when faced with the prospects of job hunting post-undergrad, can be a treacherous and costly uphill challenge—she didn’t dissuade all students from considering law school, but reminded the crowd of mostly juniors and seniors that law is not right for everyone; as seen by a quip from one student during the Q&A session: “The question for St. Mary’s grads is always ‘So do I join the Peace Corps or go to law school?’”—it’s a reminder that needs to be heard.

The forum not only showed students real-life examples of English majors in the workforce, but they brought viable and direct options with them, some even bringing information about internships and applications available at their place of work.  Prof. Robin Bates later marveled at the way networking really does seem to work well for St. Mary’s students—“Everybody here has each other’s backs,” he said. “I’ve never seen another college like it.”

Overall the panel left me feeling comforted, with questions answered about the viability of an English degree post-college, and examples of people whose paths left them both secure and fulfilled to guide me.

Hawkman AF

Has something of yours ever been stolen? Has something gone inexplicably missing? But then, right as you are about to send your fifth All Student Email about your “missing pink iPod touch between Monty and Kent” it shows up mysteriously at your window? Then, as you look out into the cold unforgiving night, a figure all in black with wings sprints away towards the P.S. Winnebago?

Well you’re not the only one.

Numerous sightings of the “Hawkman,” as a number of late-night weight-lifters have taken to calling him, have occurred, all within the context of a piece of vigilante justice. Once he was seen replacing the light-bulb in a street lamp outside the campus center; another time shooing a skunk away from walking on the brick path. I spoke to two students who had personal encounters with the man who some are calling a hero. Drew Merryman said, “I saw the Hawkman switch someone else’s load of laundry, even put in a dryer sheet with it. When he saw me walk in he just sorta ran away flapping his wings. The guy whose laundry it was came in right afterwards, and literally cried tears of joy.” Another similar incident happened to one Micheal Elkan: “It was two thirty, right after my calc class, and I went to go get lunch from the Great-Room, but when I got there there was no one at the register. Suddenly the Hawkman swooped in from behind me in a whirlwind of feathers; he swiped me in and gave me an extra straw with my take-out box so I could pretend to be a walrus.” Obviously touched, Micheal added, “It was the best day of my life.”

How someone so conspicuous could escape photography is astounding, but I couldn’t find a single picture of this “Hawkman.” Until I heard this story, sophmore Miriam Finnley said “I was once studying late at night in the library, my headphones in and music blaring to help me focus. I lost track of time and eventually the 1 am time limit came around…but I couldn’t hear the ‘library’s closing’ song. I would’ve been yelled at by a mildly upset librarian had the Hawkman not stepped in. He tapped me on my shoulder to tell me the library was closing. He literally saved my life.” I investigated the scene of the rescue to pick up clues as to the Hawkman’s true identity,  but all I found were feathers and an open window. And a ladder leading to the ground from the open window. So I end where I started, no clues to the Hawkman’s identity. But does it matter? With these harmless heroics what could go wrong? Well, as always there are two sides to this story. A maintenance worker who asked to remain unidentified had this to say: “Yea I was just going to do my job and squeegee the third floor windows in the library, but the ladder I set aside wasn’t there. I had to walk all the way around to the other side of the library to get the ladder.” In tears he added, “It was mildly inconvenient.” So the jury is still out. Hawkman, admirable hero? Or rising menace? That’s for you to decide.

NAMI Club Spotlight

With so many students in college dealing with issues such as mental illness, it is really refreshing to hear that there are people here at St. Mary’s that are willing to help. The NAMI club at SMCM provides students with a safe space where they can talk with peers that understand certain struggles, such as dealing with depression, seeking therapy, medication, media pressure, etc. It shows students that they are not alone.

So what exactly is NAMI?  NAMI is the National Alliance on Mental Illness and the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization, dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness.  The NAMI club at SMCM is led by president Taylor Foley and vice president Will Stone, two students who really do care about the wellbeing of their fellow classmates.

NAMI was started by the SMCM alum Rachel Bishop who graduated last year. She now works for NAMI and started the group on campus as a final part of her SMP. Taylor Foley told the Point News that “A typical meeting starts at 8 – 8:15 on a Thursday night.  We start out with rose-bud-thorn, where we each say the best part of the week, the part we are looking forward to, and the part that wasn’t so swell.  This just opens up the room for comfortable conversation, and also allows for some brief venting, if needed. Then we dive into the focus topic.  A usual topic of discussion can include influences of the media on perceptions of mental illnesses, stigmas on our own campus, etc. Sometimes we have yummy snacks as well. :)” Foley continued, “We usually go off on tangents and end up rattling on about a television show that negatively portrayed a mental illness, or the distasteful shirts sold at certain stores that have phrases such as ‘Eat Less’ or ‘Depression’ scrawled all over them. Meetings are typically an hour long, but sometimes we go over because we do not stop talking.”

When asked about why Taylor supports NAMI, and how it has impacted her personally, she told us that, “I support NAMI because I have suffered from depression ever since I was young. I had never had anyone else who fully understood my struggles, until Rachel Bishop introduced me to NAMI.  NAMI has made me feel more secure. Before, I thought that maybe the feelings I had experienced in the past were ridiculous. At one time I had honestly considered myself a basket-case. But NAMI has shown me that everyone has some sort of obstacle, but we are all able to overcome it.”

Will Stone also shared how NAMI has impacted him personally. I support NAMI and its efforts due to my own mental imbalance, having dealt with depression for close to a decade. It is an excellent peer support group composed of some of the kindest people on campus, and we advocate for everyone who has had their life shaped in some way by mental illness.  Our bimonthly meetings offer time to talk about our experiences in a receptive environment. While I meet with a psychiatrist about once a year, the NAMI meetings offer a tremendous complement to conventional therapy, simply by being able to discuss things honestly with people our own age who are in a similar headspace.”

If you or someone you know is dealing with mental illness, in any form, or you just want to know more about mental health in general, then NAMI might be a good option for you. You can contact NAMI vice president at whstone@smcm.edu or NAMI president Taylor Foley at tdfoley@smcm.edu. NAMI meets Thursday evenings at 8:15, twice monthly, in the Goodpaster Faculty Lounge (on the ground floor, near the campus drive main entrance).

The Hobbit: A Movie Review

The Hobbit an Unexpected Journey

The Hobbit an Unexpected Journey is a fresh take on the Romantic Comedy genre. The film starts with our main character Hobbit (Adam Sandler) looking for an engagement ring for his wife Gannondolf (Adam Sandler). She wants a magic ring, specifically, so he goes to a cave to find it. There he meets Gollum (Jack Nicholson) who tells Hobbit that if he wants the ring he needs to go on a journey, an unexpected journey. This is where the film becomes very interesting.  The movie becomes kind of confusing when you realize that Hobbit’s name is not Hobbit and that his name is Frodo. Frodo meets a bunch of dwarves from Snow White and they go to try to kill the dragon from Shrek (Datkota Fanning) so that they can stop Sauron from stealing Shrek’s swamp. Director Joss Wheaton does a good job making the viewer feel that Frodo is actually real because really none of this is real it is just a movie. Does anyone read my movie reviews? I doubt it. I doubt anyone in the entire world will ever read this besides me. Why do I even try? I could literally write anything and it wouldn’t matter. I honestly haven’t even seen the Hobbit movies and I still have to write a review on the second one with a minimum of 500 words.  Why do I care? I have to take a piss but I don’t feel like getting up to do so, so I am just going to cross my legs and try to forget about it. Words words words. More Words. Are we at 500 yet? Nope, only 278 including the title I wrote which won’t even really be a part of it. If you are reading this right now then I have a favor to ask. Email me and tell me that you read it. I want to see if I even get one email. I really would be shocked. 332 words now. Now its three hundred thirty-seven words. Words. More Words. The Hobbit was so good I loved it. It had good acting and good story telling and good music and good credits, both opening and closing. Made me feel like I was really in Westros. It was such an unexpected journey. I was like “what the heck that is so crazy oh my god.” Very good movie. 400 words. Almost there. Well not really almost there.  I still have to review the Battle of Five Armies. Another movie that I haven’t seen. And even if I had seen these movies why would my opinion on them be better than anyone else’s? What makes the words that I write on this page anything special? There is no explanation or good reason.  I asked for this. I asked to write these reviews. I guess I am just a masochist. I am so close to 500. Overall this was a good movie with good stuff. Now we’re done.

8.5 / 10

The Hobbit a Battle of Five Armies

The Hobbit a Battle of Five Armies is Alfred Hitchcock’s take on The Passion of the Christ. This film has a star studded cast with so many stars you will think this movie is the night sky.  When I first looked at the dish I was slightly confused.  Ramen in cabbage salad? I’ve never had anything like it. The salad also included almonds which isn’t something that I really like in my salad. Would I say the salad changed my mind about almonds? No. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t like it. Quite the opposite actually. I enjoyed the crunchiness. I liked being able to taste my salad differently. It was a fresh take on a well-known formula that made my dinner different.  The potato pancakes on the other hand were more simple. But you have to remember what I always say, “simplicity does not mean bad food.” That was definitely the case with this meal. The potato pancakes were simple, yet delicious. The complexity of the meal came not with how the food was made, but yet how it made me feel. My emotions were struck by these positively precious potato pancakes. I often wonder if I am truly a good person. Do I care about others? Am I entirely selfish? This question was answered after I finished my meal. I felt true emotions and empathy that I didn’t know I could feel. I felt like a real person, not a piece of human trash that is not fit to live their life on this planet. Not some rancid swine feeding off of the good deeds of others. I felt… happy. Overall good movie. Good acting. Good story. A very good soundtrack that was great and good but still managed to be good. I liked how they had a sponsorship from Pepsi. It made the film feel kind of good to me. It made it feel like really great to me. A good movie I think in my opinion. 337. Almost there. I just want to stop. Bleh. When I was a kid my sister decided that she wanted to throw a rock at my head so I started to bleed. I also stuck a bead in my nose and I had to go to a doctor for them to get it out. If you are wondering whether or not you should stick a bead in your nose then I think you should not. My review for the bead in the nose would go like this: It is bad. Not a good time. In fact it is a very bad time. Don’t spend your money on beads if you are just going to stick them into your nose you doofus. Come on. 4/10. But that is not what I am reviewing. I am reviewing The Hobbit Battle of Five Armies. I know what you might be wondering to yourself, “Where does the Hobbit keep his armies?” In his sleeveies. I’m done.

10/10

Vice President for Advancement

Throughout the Spring 2014 semester, the President’s Office has been involved with the search for a new Vice President for the college’s Division of Advancement. The months of February and March have marked many occasions on which candidates for the position have visited the campus and participated in open forums, where students were invited to ask questions regarding the candidates’ intentions if given the position.

The position, which oversees the offices of Development, Alumni Relations, and the Arts Alliance, is currently held by interim Vice President Michael A. Grandillo. The search has now been narrowed down to two candidates: Gary B. Grant and Carolyn Curry.

Grant, the current Vice President for College Advancement at Washington College in Chestertown, MD, has also held a similar position at the University of North Texas Health Science Center, and served as the Director of Major Gifts at the National Alzheimer’s Association and the University of Chicago Medical Center. He holds a JD from the IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, and has authored several publications regarding online fundraising.

On the other hand, Curry, has served as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Delaware State University since 2004, and also currently holds positions within the University as the CEO and President of the Delaware State University Foundation, inc., and as the University President’s Chief of Staff. She has also served as Vice President for Institutional Advancement & Executive Officer for Communications at West Virginia University, and holds a M.S. in Communications with a Public Affairs emphasis from Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania.

With Mr. Grant and Ms. Curry having completed their forums on the 5th and 23rd of March respectively, the college awaits an announcement regarding the final decision. However, due to respect for the confidentiality of the decision process, the President’s Office was understandably mum:

“An offer is pending and the announcement will be made when the contract has been signed,” said Vivian Jordan, Executive Assistant at the President’s Office.

With both candidate’s resumes and forums having been reviewed, students, faculty and staff can expect a final decision within the coming months.

Sustainability Wednesdays

In an effort to further reduce the school’s carbon emissions, St. Mary’s College’s SEAC, or Student Envirnomental Action Coalition, has begun a new campaign titled “Sustainability Wednesdays” in pursuit of their goal of carbon neutrality by 2020.

The program, which takes root in the national campaign of “Meatless Mondays”, will make meat and meat-based food options unavailable in the Great Room on Wednesdays, as the processing of meat for consumption leaves a greater carbon footprint on the environment.

“We decided on ‘Sustainability Wednesdays’ because we believe the name better portrays what we are trying to accomplish on campus,” said SEAC member Emily Altman. “If the program is implemented, the great room will serve an all-vegetarian menu on Wednesdays.”

The implementation of such a program occurred two years ago, and drew mixed reactions from students. This year, SEAC’s emphasis lies on education.

“In terms of our campaign,” said Altman, “we have put up posters and flyers on campus that provide education and information about Sustainability Wednesdays. We have been tabling outside the Great Room about the positive effects of going vegetarian one day a week, as it relates to the impact of factory farming, carbon emissions, and the climate action plan.”

In addition to the tabling and flyers, SEAC hosted a screening of “Planeat”, a documentary on the physical and environmental effects of our diets, on March 24th in the Library, with further educational events to follow. Despite more organized support for the program, the challenge remains in convincing the student body of the plan’s effectiveness, in addition to the merits of eliminating all forms of meat from the main eatery on campus for a day.

“I would like to see the school try to pursue other routes of carbon reduction,” said junior biology student Melanie MacDonald, “but if they do instate a sustainability diet, I think that they should mainly address beef and dairy products.”

The other concerns lie in providing sufficient varieties of protein-rich substitutes for meat and meat-based products for students, especially in the case of athletes, who require higher calorie and protein counts during the season.

Said Altman, “We have been petitioning students as well as faculty this semester in order to promote an open dialogue where we can provide information about our campaign as well as listen and address any concerns that students may have. Ultimately…Sustainability Wednesdays will be decided by a referendum through the SGA where all students will have the opportunity to vote.”

SEAC will be hosting a faculty forum Friday, April 3rd, at which five faculty members from various areas of study will offer their opinions on Sustainability Wednesdays, followed by a student Q&A section. More details will be offered as the date approaches.