Notes from Senior Editors

Addie Maxwell
Opinion Editor

I’ve always thought its funny how I’m the opinion section editor. I always say I have no opinions on anything, except apparently drinking, because I’ve written about it several times. In high school I was voted Most Laid Back, I’m an uninformed optimist, so why the heck did they give me this gig?

Q baby with Q Barbie (Photo: The Quindecim)

Q baby with Q Barbie (Photo: The Quindecim)

What I quickly realized was that I didn’t have to write about the government or go on angry rants about the environment to run this section.  While these sorts of things are important and have found a place in my section, opinions can also be about our own, everyday lives.  During my tenure, this is the tone the opinion section has taken.  One of my favorite pieces I wrote was in those first issues.  I wrote about turning twenty-one, an experience all college students share.

I’d like to think that what I choose to write about connects with where the collective “us” is in our lives, that someone finishes my article, nods their head, and says “yeah man, that connects with me.”  I’ve been fortunate enough to, on a few occasions, have those people reach out to me.  The number of times I could probably count on one hand, but in a community that apparently “doesn’t read The Q,” it feels big.

As an editor, I’ve helped facilitate this experience for others.  My writers have had their articles shared in classes, and they’ve received emails from administrators wanting their help editing policies.  I am proud that my section has given students the voice they need and deserve.

As an athlete, this is the kind of work I want to be a part of.  This is why I sit in the office, writing what’s in my soul at four in the morning (it always feels far more profound at that hour).  Because, this matters to the people around me.  If I was writing a paper for class I would go to bed, but when the rush of the team effort, of your words in print, of the possibility of connecting with someone you don’t even know is out there, how can you not write?  It is immediate gratification at its most intellectual, and I hope I’ll be doing it for a long while.

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Internship Policy Still Under Review; Questions Posed from Students

Benjamin Snyder
Managing and News Editor

President Sanford Ungar spoke about the academic internship policy slated to begin this summer, which adds a $450 per credit fee internships for the winter or summer at a Feb. 20 Student Government Association (SGA) meeting. Read more of this post

Academic Internship Fee Set to Start in Summer 2013

Benjamin Snyder
Managing and News Editor

President Sanford Ungar sent an email to the Goucher community on Dec. 19 announcing a fee for academic internships, which carry typically three to four credits, at $450 per credit. The new fee will be implemented beginning summer 2013.

According to Student Government Association (SGA) President Dashell Fittry ’13, “Sandy is slated to speak to Senate, the tentative date is Feb. 20th. Once that date is confirmed, an email will be sent to the student body talking more in depth about the policy and about Sandy attending Senate.”

In his email, Ungar wrote, “After careful consideration, we have determined that students should pay for the academic credits they receive while attending Goucher regardless of how such credits are earned, and have therefore decided to make a change to our internship credit policy.”

The choice to charge students $450, according to Ungar, was reached as it “is the same amount currently charged for students taking courses during the summer.”

According to Laurie Burton-Graham, Goucher’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel, the decision to attach a cost to academic internships taking place during summer, winter, or when a student is taking over the 18-credit limit during the academic year, was reached by members of senior staff. “I can’t remember if it was brought up to college council or not to be honest, but I know senior staff spent a lot of time talking about it,” she said.

Burton-Graham continued that the discussion began at the start of the academic year in the fall and the college’s Vice Presidents made a formal recommendation to Ungar in November ahead of his Dec. 19 email.

Traci Martin, the Director of the Career Development Office (CDO), said that conversations about charging for academic internship credits have taken place “for years.” She continued, “We have been asked in the last couple years to do some research and benchmarking with our peer institutions. We were having conversations with [former] Vice President and Dean of Students [Gail] Edmonds and [Provost] Marc Roy about what exists, providing numbers, how many students get credit.”

In the email, Ungar cited reasons for the additional fee. “We anticipate that the additional income to the college, while helpful, will be limited,” he wrote. “Rather, the policy of charging fairly for all academic credits received is one that honors the value of a Goucher education and, ultimately, a Goucher degree.”

Burton-Graham mirrored Ungar’s opinion, saying, “Charging for credits is standard practice and it’s good practice and it’s practice at most of our peer institutions. In fact, it’s practiced at most higher education institutions.” She continued, “It says something of a value of a Goucher degree and a Goucher education.”

She later added, “This isn’t a huge windfall for the college, it’s more about the principle.”

Although further discussions about where the money will be placed is likely to continue, Burton-Graham said, “I think the decision to charge the fee is done. I would be very surprised if Sandy is going to revisit that decision.”

After students received Ungar’s email, a Facebook group was created, titled, “Gophers Against New Policies,” which drew over 400 students. Said Fittry, “It is nice to see the students so passionate about an issue, but as with many ‘campaigns’ on Facebook, the students lose interest and the group dies off. This happened to this group within a week.”

Instead, Fittry hopes students will email their SGA representatives to voice concerns in the future. He explained, “Over 400 people joined the group, but only 16, [or] 4% of the group, people took the initiative to contact me personally which says something about the effectiveness of online campaigns like the one that was launched for this policy change.”

According to Martin, the first cycle of students getting internships in the summer will prove helpful as the discussion moves forward. “I don’t think this is the end of it,” she said. “I think we’ll need to continue to look at what the departments will do, the choices students will make.”

While Fittry said he personally “doesn’t have a problem with the policy,” he continued, “as SGA President, it is my duty to address the concerns of the student body which I have done and which will be further discussed at Senate with President Ungar.” He continued, “I think once the student body gets all the facts and understands the policy a bit more they will come to agree with me that this policy makes sense and is going to be beneficial to the campus.”

Martin believes the first summer of internships with the fee will be telling. “We’re really just going to have to go through a cycle this summer and see what happens and evaluate it and adjust as best we can,” she said

Coker Appointed New Vice President, Dean of Students

Benjamin Snyder
Managing and News Editor

Bryan Coker was appointed as the Vice President and Dean of Students and successor to Gail Edmonds. He began his role on February 4.

Dean Coker shows his pride for his new stomping grounds. (Photo: Christopher Riley).

Dean Coker shows his pride for his new stomping grounds.
(Photo: Christopher Riley).

President Sanford Ungar announced the decision in an email to the Goucher community on Dec. 19 after the conclusion of a nation-wide search that started with 147 candidates. Read more of this post

Committee to Choose New Vice President and Dean of Students by Mid-December

Shay Kettner

Benjamin Snyder
Managing Editor

A new Vice President and Dean of Students will be chosen from four candidates by mid-December, according to Laurie Burton-Graham, Goucher’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel, and Co-Chair of the search committee. The selected applicant is expected to join the Goucher community at the end of January or early February.

“This is a very quick timeline,” Burton-Graham said, “especially for a position at this level.”

The four finalists were chosen from a pool of over 150 online applications, all of which were reviewed by Burton-Graham and Becky Kurdle, former Chair of the Board of Trustees and Co-Chair of the committee.

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