Yes RADIKAL readers, we have a new feature on the blog that continually brings you SG News (even during the time no one wants to cover *hint, hint SG, LL)
For the first edition of W.O.T.N. two questions were presented to a loyal Radikal reader, IRHA President E.J. Walicki. So, here goes:
T.R. Could you please address the Minus Grade Issue?
E.J.W.: I agree with the minue grade issue, probably one of the few students that do. I read the facebook group posts about it (there were a lot) and there was a lot of good ideas out there. I do believe it is a better indicator of where a student lies on the grade spectrum. I know a lot of students feel that they will be cheated, I have an A and now I have an A- and the B+ is lower gpa wise and the B- is a 2.67. But what about the person who does just enough to get a B is now equal to someone who just missed a B+, you have the same GPA. The Faculty Senate seems set on the system that is common but a modified scale could work. I like to play devil's advocate because I feel it brings out better arguments and educates people. And with any change at a university, in four or fives years, there won't be many students who will remember that we didn't have minus grades, it will be a normal thing, I am not saying that is the only reason to do it though.
I know students are worried about grad school, etc. with mixed scales for the sophomores and juniors but all colleges have a way to take that into account. I plan on talking with the Faculty Senators from CLAS (my college) to get their ideas. My main issue with the proposal is timing and cost. Is this a priority for the faculty and the university right now? I feel that it is not with so many other issues going on with CLAS and the new academic enhancement program. Maybe it will just get passed but not be initiated for a few years, I don't know. I also want to know how much this will cost the university and if that cost is a priority over other costs. I can tell you from what I have seen and heard that the students feel it would not be a priority costwise. If the Faculty Senate feels it is a priority then they will probably go ahead with the plan. As a representative of the students on the Faculty Senate though, I need to speak on their behalf, and although that differs from my opinion, I will reasearch as hard as I can to support the students views.
T.R. Could you please address the Support of the Academic Enhancement Plan?
E.J.W.: I will support and not support the plan and here is why. If services you receive as a student is a priority, then I will support this plan. If keeping costs to the university down is a priority then I will not support this plan. Students want the best of both worlds and the truth is it is extremely hard to get that. They want more services but they don't want to pay more. Students need to decide what is more important to them. I personally don't think charging the students more is a good idea. I know a lot of people come to UF not only for the education that they receive and the experience, but the cost compared to other colleges.
It is very easy for students to still get a quality education and come out of undergrad without a lot of debt. I also feel that is extremely important. Maybe we can look at utilizing student organizations (Student Honors Organization or BOCC) for presentations about study abroad and internships. Looking at student volunteers to help with advising (peer advising can really work well). But if students really want more services, this is one of the best ways to do it because they will have it set out where that money will be going. It will only be going to certain areas in terms of academics.
I want to thank Stephanie Garry and her University Editor Lyndsey Lewis for all their hard work and due diligence on this matter. These two ladies represent the cutting edge of twenty-first-century American journalism. One day, either but prolly both of these women will no doubt be hired to cover a yard-sale, a church, senior citizen bingo tournament, or a used-boat-show near you. Count on it!