Short Answer

by The Dartmouth Opinion Staff | 2/13/11 11:00pm

Friday's Verbum Ultimum discussed why it is important for students to contribute to the dean of the College search process. What is the most effective way for students hoping to affect change in the Dartmouth community to make their voices heard by the administration?

Before students worry about the best way to be heard by the administration in its search for a new dean of the College, they need to be made aware of how the position impacts their lives. That is the only way to get students to understand why their voices need to be heard in this process. Once that has been accomplished, it will be much easier to generate the momentum necessary for student voices to be heard by the administration.Sapna Chemplavil

The only way to make the College administration listen to anything is to go public with a large group of supporters and stay vocal Students Stand With Staff is a prime example of this tactic in action. But Parkhurst has done well instilling a general apathy in students regarding administrative changes. Why care about the dean of the College search when games of musical chairs seem to be ongoing among administrators with little visible impact on student life?Brian Solomon

Students can directly influence administrative policy by attending office hours or meetings with senior officials. It is in the small group setting that our concerns will resonate most readily.Keshav Poddar

Given that around 15 students attended the open forum to discuss the dean of the College search last Wednesday, I don't think that most students can reasonably complain about being unable to voice their opinions to the administration. If anyone wishes "make their voices heard," they can easily do so at these kind of forums.Jonathan Pedde

The administration likely already has a very good idea of what it's looking for in the next dean and merely wants to be able to brag about student participation. Students are unlikely to sway the administration unless they capture headlines with demonstrations or massive written petitions advocating very specific criteria.Roger Lott

The most effective way for students to make their voices heard by the administration is to organize and insist on meeting with administration officials in large numbers. Past endeavors have proven that having only one or two students involved with the process, say as members of a search committee, is inevitably frustrating and ineffective.Raza Rasheed

Students often complain about the inefficiencies of various College officials or programs. I hope that this time around, the student body is able to mobilize and participate in the search. One way the student body could participate would be to form a petition detailing relevant qualities and experience necessary to be an effective dean.Jacob Batchelor

The administration knows more or less what the issues in the community are. They don't need their awareness raised. If students want change, they need to create detailed, workable solutions and offer them for consideration. That would get a hearing. But don't be surprised if you can't make a plan that pleases everybody.Charles Clark

Personally, I see nothing wrong with the open forums we currently have. The low attendance at these meetings means that those who attend will have the time to make their point to the administration. The small setting is actually probably the best way for students who care to get their voices heard.Ethan Wang

While choosing the next dean of the College is an important task, it isn't vital for students to be involved in the selection process. Instead, it's important for students to express their opinions on specific issues rather than using their time to become involved with things that can be handled solely by the administration.Natalie Colaneri