Academic Affairs needs student input to improve

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As chair of the Academic Affairs Committee of the Undergraduate Student Senate, I am fully aware of the complaints last year of the lack of communication between Senate and the Carnegie Mellon community. Academic Affairs is made up of a number of hardworking students. Our primary contact within the administration is Dr. Indira Nair, vice-provost for education.

I’d like to announce an opportunity for students to voice their opinions directly to us. I look forward to working with everyone to help make academic life for undergraduate and graduate students better.

On October 24, the academic affairs committee will host an open forum, and we invite both graduate and undergraduate students to attend. The idea behind this forum is to have students come and both complain about and applaud Carnegie Mellon University. Although this committee is academic in nature, there is no boundary on the topics I wish to discuss — anything from the school’s involvement with the community to its involvement in your day-to-day lives. I want each attendee to think, beforehand, of three things he or she dislikes and wants done away with, dislikes and wants fixed, or just things already enjoyed but needing improvement. Then for each idea, I want a quick one-liner about how we should go about making the change. We will then proceed to discuss these as a group. I am hoping that some of the things brought forward can be fixed overnight, and I’m looking forward to spending a long period of time on others. In an effort to make this forum as candid and comfortable as possible there will be no faculty attending, and if they try I won’t let them in. I want you all to be able to speak freely without fear of consequence.

As many of you should come to this as possible; there will be food. In all seriousness — if there isn’t a large group of people such as yourselves complaining to someone like me about what you want fixed or worked on, it won’t get done. There is only so much that can happen when an administrator meets with a diverse group of 10 students representing everyone. At this forum everyone can be represented. So please come, bring what’s on your mind, and write it down, so I can split those tasks among the academic affairs committee and others within Senate. Remember, this is the Student Senate; we were elected by you and we work for you.