Saturday, July 14, 2007

The Newly Initiated

Plastering the school in posters is a common method of getting the word out about that upcoming SIM acappella concert or that Amnesty letter writing campaign. But during the summer, the corkboards and doors are surprisingly empty with language schools restricted to their own buildings.

That is until today when a smattering of anti-"new middlebury logo" posters and chalkings appeared throughout the school. From BiHall Great Hall Chalkboard to the McCullough mail center, the on-campus, english-speaking, undergraduates are bringing the large Middlebury Facebook cause from the virtual world into real life.

This is a big stir because a new portion of the Middlebury community, namely faculty and staff, are being let in on a new student initiative. Except, unlike the school-year, there are very few students on campus to support this initiative.

It'll be interesting to see if any faculty or staff come out with a position on this. There really is no reason for any of them to do so but if someone does speak up, it'll certainly make waves in the administration as well as with students.


Rachel Rose said...

I'm pretty sure it was off the record, but I talked candidly with a well-liked, well-respected, and, most importantly, tenured professor yesterday and this person was adamant that most of the faculty strongly dislike the logo and the way the change was made. I believe "ridiculous" was the word used but don't quote me...The professor in question advocated a letter-writing campaign as a tool for all disgruntled students. Maybe it's only a matter of time before the faculty start speaking out themselves.

Sarah Franco said...

The professor of whom Rachel Rose speaks will be happy to know that a vigorous letter-writing campaign has been undertaken by many disgruntled students-- to the point that Mike McKenna had to mass-mail about 17 of us because the letters kept pouring in.

The next step in our campaign comes in the form of a report and a plea to the administration, written by Chandler Koglmeier. This isn't just about a corporate logo--which some have dismissed as superficial-- it's also about an administration which consistently ignores proposals/votes from the Faculty Council, SGA, and the student body at-large. Anyone who has been year since Fall 2004, will remember the controversies surrounding the acquisition of the Monterey Institute, the discrimination policy and military recruiting, and, most recently, the changes in the Commons System, which resulted in the resignation of a well-liked, well-respected Commons Dean, David Edleson. Because the logo is what has prompted all of this protesting, Chandler uses it as a case study and he also offers many suggestions to the administration with regard to the logo.

If any Faculty, Staff, Students, Parents, or Alumni would like to sign this report-- or even just read it-- please contact Chandler Koglmeier, or myself, Sarah (McGowen) Franco. The report, in my opinion, is well-written, not inflammatory, and it does not target any one member of the administration in particular. It is a call for change: we would like the administration of Middlebury College to be more communicative about major initiatives with the Faculty, Staff, Students, and Alumni of Middlebury College.

on the books...