Campus / News / Student Senate / March 6, 2008

Senate meeting full of reports, TKS controversy

In the weekly meeting last Thursday, a notable $10,000 was returned to the Senate Discretionary Fund from the Union Board, as the artist the money was intended for was unable to perform as scheduled.

Senators and seniors Matthew Cessna and Leah Heister then presented a written report from Faculty Observer Tim Kasser on the latest meeting of the Board of Trustees, and gave an oral overview of the meeting and their impressions.

“The curriculum committee of the faculty,” Heister said, “is oftentimes overburdened by the duties of their committee, by approving course proposals, and by doing various tasks, looking into approving the various courses that professors want to teach, but they don’t have as much time as they’d like to look at the overall academic condition of the college.”

The report covered a wide range of topics, but in summary Heister said, “Things are going great at Knox and we are moving forward. There were troubles in the past but [the Board of Trustees] seemed pleased about Knox internally and externally. “

The floor was then opened up for questions, which ranged from sports funding to security cameras on campus. Quite a few senators asked about the state of and future plans for Alumni Hall. Heister and Cessna responded that plans were in development, and would most likely take more alumni input into consideration, which would hopefully increase donations to the project.

In addition to what was said during the meeting, Cessna views the current state of Knox’s enrollment and capacity as very important.

“One very important issue is to relate to the fact that we’re at capacity at Knox College,” Cessna said. “We’re 98 percent full. There are so many issues that go along with this besides where students sleep, like the state of the counseling center and faculty support. We don’t have enough faculty to advise everyone, and only full time faculty can be advisors. We may still have the same student to faculty ratio as a few years ago, but that includes visiting professors, who can’t advise. Students are losing out on that issue.”

Finally, there was a community business discussion of the recent TKS controversy. The editorial board of The Knox Student was invited to attend, but elected not to, as a student forum was taking place at the same time in the Gizmo. The discussion itself saw many senators expressing opinions on all sides of the issue, with some in favor of the decision for the editors not to attend and others opposed to it.

This was the last Student Senate meeting of the term.

Andrew Polk

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