TOP HAT

Grand Marshal details diversity on campus as well as events for seniors

RPI Students,

I hope that everyone enjoyed the 39th Big Red Freakout! last weekend! We fought hard, left it all on the ice, and all we can say is that our school still burns with the spirit of the Red & White.

Shoutout to my fellow Seniors this week! Go out and enjoy our 100 Days celebration. The Class of 2016 Council has been hard at work putting this event together, and we should go out and enjoy it! We’ve got four years of hard work to make up for, after all. For more information, check your email for info from our class president Joshua Schramm at schraj2@rpi.edu.

This coming weekend, in line with Black History Month, is Black Family Tech Day on Saturday, February 13. This is an opportunity for us as students to learn high-level engineering and science skills to inspire youth to invest themselves in the sciences through fun and educational activities. I highly encourage everyone to participate. As we look to the history of black people in the United States, I want everyone to take a look at the diversity they see around themselves. Or, in some cases, the lack thereof. Know that absence of diversity in a college setting is detrimental, and it would behoove you to find a way to expose yourself to the ideas of people from across the world with an open mind.

Last Wednesday in the Student Senate, we had a representative from the Faculty Senate come and talk to us about academic integrity. The goal of the discussion was to evaluate whether the issue warranted further investigation by the Faculty Senate, and any way that it could be pursued. Overwhelmingly, student senators acknowledged this as a very real aspect of our academic environment, and something that should be readily addressed. That being said, I am happy to announce Samantha Notley ’17 as the new chairman of the Community Relations Committee. In essence, the CRC aims to increase the interactions and exposure of students between our campus and Troy, as well as nearby college campuses. This is moving towards the integration of the Capital Region college community that I staunchly believe we need as students, and will bring a more cheerful atmosphere throughout the year.

Now, I shall give my address to the changes in the Student Union budgeting for RPI Athletics. Excluding myself, the Student Senate was not previously aware of this situation. Consequently, any questions should be directed to the President of the Union at pu@rpi.edu.

However, I will give some information about the process of accreditation: this aims to quantify and evaluate the quality of an education environment, as well as ensure that a standard set of practices are maintained at multiple administrative levels. This evaluation is comprehensive, even evaluating what opportunities there are for student leadership on campus. I became somewhat familiar with the academic portion of this evaluation last year, and offer myself as a resource for information about it at gm@rpi.edu. However, as I stated before, all budgeting-related questions should go to pu@rpi.edu.

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