Mail Bag

Students essential to debate
UA President Robert N. Shelton has proposed sweeping changes that will substantially change the way the university will function. The President himself has said, “”The time has come to take bold action … “” with the Chair of the Faculty Senate (Dr. Wanda Howell) stating, “”It’s no longer a luxury to think about transformation … it is a necessity.”” These changes will include the combining of or elimination of university academic units, with numbers that could reach heights that this university has not seen in the recent past.

Your voice and opinions are essential in letting the UA Faculty and Administration know what is vital to our education. The administrative units on campus have already begun to downsize, and the English Graduate Union has stated that class sizes are on the increase in the Department of English. The College of Science has already started to consider ways they can reduce numbers of academic departments, with a suggestion to decrease from 13 departments to four specialized schools. These examples are but the beginning. It cannot be stressed enough that your voice will go a long way in not only expressing what you feel is important, but could also affect enrollment limits that teaching assistants are responsible for and the availability of classes and graduate assistantships.

The Graduate and Professional Student Council is committed to working with administrators to ensure that they hear our opinions during their meetings. However, there are only so many representatives and officers and we need your help. Contact your deans within your colleges, speak with your GPSC Representatives about your concerns and pay close attention to the decisions made by your faculty. The administration wants to hear the viewpoints of all concerning this proposal, and without your voice at the college and department level, graduate and professional students will not be strongly heard.

Stephen W. Bieda, III
Graduate and Professional Student Body President