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As reported in the Daily Targum (March 13, 2014: “Apartment Building to Replace Abandoned Lot”), a commercial real estate developer, Construction Management Associates, is seeking approval of variances from the New Brunswick Planning Board for the purpose of building a four-story apartment building at 17 Mine St., the former location of the Catholic Center, in the heart of the College Avenue Campus.
As you may have noticed, the United States Student Association is on the ballot this year for referendum. However, what supporting USSA means for Rutgers has not been presented as a two-sided argument, and as an alumna of the program, I would like to state my views on the organization to help you decide how to vote on the ballot. I intend to give a multifaceted view on the situation. While there are good things about the organization, there are also elements of USSA that you should know about before deciding to support.
Hello Scarlet Knights, my name is Ian Wolf, and I am your elections chair for the Rutgers University Student Assembly, the undergraduate student government for Rutgers University.
On March 7, 2014, University President Robert L. Barchi sent a letter by email to the entire Rutgers community responding to the controversy over inviting Condoleezza Rice to speak at our commencement.
Since 2009, Rutgers has been issuing the Survey of Student Experiences at the Research University (SERU). The university has joined the Universities of California, Minnesota, Michigan, Pittsburgh, Oregon, Southern California, Virginia, Iowa, Indiana, and Washington as well as Texas A&M and Purdue University in a combined effort to improve the educational experiences of students. The survey allows students to provide their opinions on what they are or are not satisfied with. The SERU, as well as other surveys, does however lack an emphasis on attitude. It is believed that simply asking about satisfaction of various aspects of the student experience is not enough, and that more emphasis on attitude should be placed when evaluating the college experience.
Trigger warning: This column contains references to sexual abuse.
The world-class faculty of Rutgers Business School – Newark and New Brunswick serves a diverse, ambitious and growing student body. Our faculty and staff are immensely proud that we maintain academic excellence while providing business education to more and more Rutgers students. Having increased our enrollment by 60 percent since 2008, we are now the largest business school in the Big Ten, with nearly 5,000 undergraduate students and more than 2,000 graduate students. The Rutgers brand and our location in the New York metropolitan area enables us to attract highly qualified faculty, deliver innovative education and attractive employment opportunities to our students, and make exceptional connections with local, regional, and multinational businesses. Our splendid new buildings at 100 Rockafeller Road in Piscataway — or “100 Rock” — and at 1 Washington Park in Newark are major symbols of the recent growth and increasing stature of our comprehensive, two-campus Rutgers Business School. Our increased focus on undergraduates is especially noteworthy. In 1990, Rutgers decided that separate undergraduate programs in Newark and New Brunswick were impractical and insufficient and merged them with the Graduate School of Management headquartered in Newark, with its larger research faculty and greater connections with New Jersey business. During the 1990s, our two undergraduate programs remained small and selective, with fewer than 400 graduates on each campus each year. But in the past five-to-ten years, the University has asked us to more than double both these undergraduate programs.
After the Board of Governors unilaterally decided to extend an invitation to Condoleezza Rice for this year’s commencement address, Rutgers University faculty responded. First, Rutgers New Brunswick’s Faculty Council, which is “the principal faculty body from which the administration will seek advice and to which the administration will be accountable on campus wide academic policy issues,” passed a resolution calling on the administration to rescind its invitation to Rice. Second, several faculty members vocally protested the decision in the Daily Targum. Most recently, a petition opposing the Board’s decision has surfaced with more than 350 faculty signatories. In response to the resolution passed by the Faculty Council, University President Robert L. Barchi sent out an email championing the Board’s unilateral decision to honor Rice with a law degree and a $35,000 honorarium by: 1) suggesting, without evidence, that as many members of the Rutgers community are in favor as are opposed to the decision ?2) supplying wonderful reasons about why he thinks she is a worthy honoree 3) affirming Rice’s right to “the free exchange of ideas in an environment of civil discourse.” Number three is particularly interesting in light of the fact that, recently, when faculty leaders emailed the Board requesting that they be able to explain their opposition at the next Board meeting, they received a response denying them on the grounds that “The bylaws of the Rutgers University Board of Governors set forth a process for speaking at meetings. Speakers are welcome to address any action items that are listed on the BOG agenda. The selection of Condoleezza Rice was on a previous (Feb. 4, 2014) agenda and approved by the Board of Governors.” There is one problem with this excuse. Many faculty members were unaware of the agenda of the Feb. 4 meeting due to the Board’s negligence in fulfilling their contractual obligation to send the agenda of the meeting to the AAUP-AFT, the main faculty union, beforehand. As their agreement states: “Agenda materials for the regular monthly public meeting of the Board of Governors will be forwarded to the AAUP-AFT at the time they are distributed to the members of the Board of Governors.” Therefore, they chose to silence the faculty by selecting one part of the rules, and neglecting the other.
After reading the March 11 column, “Do universities need to reconsider value of greek life?” I felt the need to respond to its blatant butchering of every statistic presented. Please bear with me as I, the completely sober fraternity brother (hard to believe right?), systematically dissect the column.
The Rutgers Business School has just initiated its third dean search in eight years. Ever since the merger of the New Brunswick and Newark business schools in the years 1996 to 1997, three of the four deans have been forced out, ranking and reputation of the combined school has deteriorated and morale among the faculty has been in steady decline, and as a result of this, business students on both campuses have been shortchanged.
The Medical College Admission Test is a required exam for entry into U.S. medical schools. Last year, the MCAT was administered 94,907 times, and of the individuals who took the exam, roughly 48,000 applied to medical school while only 20,055 matriculated, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges. The national average score has been 25 out of 45 over the past ten years.
Recently, Rutgers’ New Brunswick Faculty Council has issued a resolution calling on the University’s Board of Governors to rescind its invitation to Condoleezza Rice as speaker for the commencement ceremony. She will accept a $35,000 honorarium and an honorary doctorate from the University.
As an American college student, I am often appalled at the attacks on higher education by our country’s hard-right minority. Arguments that our universities are places of elitist snobbery hit close to home for many of us, and the caricature of top schools as intolerant ivory towers guarded by ideological brownshirts fly in the face of what many of us know universities to be: places of respect for dissent, diverse thought and tolerance of all opinions. In the past several weeks, however, Rutgers has shown American universities’ fiercest critics that we are all too capable of being exactly who they say we are.
The first thing to note about Rutgers’ new Strategic Plan is that there is no serious talk about reducing the burden of tuition costs imposed on students. The increasing costs students have had to shoulder are mentioned only in passing with no further comment. If the Board of Governors truly cared about the mounting financial hardship students have had to endure, and its consequent detriment to genuine education, not to mention “creative expression and human experience,” they would make mitigating this hardship one of the main priorities of the Strategic Plan.
Are men’s rights being taken away when women are granted more? In most situations, such as equal pay and equal treatment in the workforce, the answer is no. The case of Title IX, however, is more complicated. Title IX sets criteria for universities to ensure that “sex discrimination [is banned] in educational institutions receiving federal funds.” The legislation has many benefits. For example, it prevents women from being harassed, abused or treated differently in an academic setting. When it comes to athletic opportunities, however, a lot of men are losing out. Because Title IX requires equal funding for both men’s and women’s teams, many universities have cut men’s programs, claiming they are unable to raise the budget for women’s sports without cutting from men’s. Is this necessarily the truth? No, because there are several other options available. Women in sports are gaining more opportunities while men are losing out for no clear or real reason.
At Rutgers University, greeks have a problem. It is a problem that sororities have excluded themselves from by following their own policies down to the letter, leaving fraternities to take the blame. The culture at this university is one that encourages students to pregame, go out to binge drink and return home late at night, not remembering much of the night. However, the bigger problem here is the expectation. People know that the fraternities will party: We are social organizations, and we will do that. The problem is that people expect fraternal men to be the providers and enablers of their reckless behaviors.
The past few years have been pretty fantastic for women of color on primetime television. With the introduction of shows like “Scandal,” “Suits,” “The Mindy Project,” “Elementary” and 2013’s breakout hit “Sleepy Hollow,” we have seen a steady rise of female actresses of color in leading roles. Not just as parts of an ensemble but as real, central, plot-driving leading ladies.
Living somewhere where the air hurts my face when I walk outside makes me question my life decisions everyday. In the end, there are some things in life that just seem unavoidable: Taxes, my beloved Cleveland Browns winning less than five games a year on a consistent basis, Rutgers not closing down during winter storms that rain snowflakes the size of Flappy Bird. Let’s face it — the struggle-bus is real. Every single student at Rutgers is riding it right now, and we all know our “favorite” multivariable calculus teacher isn’t driving. I would rather have our bus stuck underneath of a random pile of partial differentiation equations than the depths of the vast wilderness that is the Cook and Douglass campuses during these past few ice ages that have hit New Jersey.
Americans everywhere both marveled and broke out in anger over Coca-Cola’s Super Bowl commercial this year and its broad support for our country’s ethnic and linguistic diversity. Some were incredibly glad to see the United States portrayed in the media as multicultural and multilingual, while others were shocked and appalled at this image of the U.S. speaking languages other than English, and showcasing people other than the white population. While there is great importance in making all ethnicities and linguistic communities in the U.S. known and highlighted in positive ways, there is also an issue with the maker of this commercial, Coca-Cola. Like everything in this world, Coca-Cola’s motives must be questioned.
Recently, there has been a building discussion on the use of capital punishment in the U.S. Back in January, my home state of Ohio executed Dennis McGuire who was convicted of the rape and murder of a pregnant woman back in 1989. The controversy arose after the state used a new cocktail of drugs to execute McGuire, who died 25 minutes following the injection — during which witnesses claimed he visibly struggled and gasped for air before expiring. His lawyers and his family have planned a federal lawsuit, claiming the procedure constituted cruel and unusual punishment. Overall, 18 states currently ban the death penalty. Opponents claim that the death penalty is a cruel and unusual form of punishment that comes at a tremendous cost to taxpayers and is already banned in most civilized countries. Supporters claim that the death penalty is a necessary evil to administer justice for the most heinous criminals. Additionally, some opponents claim there are better ways to punish criminals for horrendous crimes.