The recent forums in which students were asked to provide feedback for the college seemed more like an opportunity for administration to explain away student concerns as unimportant than an actual dialogue about problems on campus.
Among the concerns were lack of space for student organizations, the high cost of textbooks and difficulties with financial aid. For every student concern, Administrators seemed to be armed with an excuse rather than a genuine desire to openly discuss campus issues with students.
What’s more, these are not new student concerns: student organizations have always contended with little or no meeting space. The processes for appeals, financial aid and the like have always been confusing and slow and textbook prices have been climbing for some time. If student concerns matter, why were there no explanations for these ongoing student issues?
The word student is not synonymous with child. It is insulting to adults to be told — even in veiled language — that their concerns seem unimportant and invalid. If the administrators do not want to hear about student concerns, they should not ask for them. Students who are genuinely concerned enough to come to such a discussion should not be met with defensive excuses and condescension.
If administrators want to show how much they care about students, they could show tangible effort toward resolving these concerns, instead of just assuring students that it will be looked into.
This forum seemed not like an open dialogue between the administration and students, but a performance by administrators in which they pretend to see students as people and not just stacks of money.