Gazebo, Bike Share, and Fireside Chat

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

Gazebo on Campus

Victor Brady ’13, Campus Life Representative, met with Claire Sawyers, Scott Arboretum Director, and Stu Hain, Vice President for Facilities and Services, last week to discuss the possibility of building a gazebo on campus. According to Brady, both Sawyers and Hain were interested in the prospect of a gazebo.

Anna Stitt ’13, Student Groups Advisor, voiced concerned about funding an “aesthetic” addition to the campus when other areas of funding are being cut. She proposed making the gazebo a student-led project: students would design and build the gazebo. Lizzy Bryant ’13, Campus Life Representative, echoed Stitt’s concerns.

Brady argued that the funding for the gazebo would be coming from “different pots” than what would cover costs such as financial aid and felt that the gazebo would be a useful location for classes to be held and for students to meet. Simon Zhu ‘11, Student Council President, suggested that a student-led project might be more costly than other alternatives.

Brady and other StuCo members will continue looking into funding options for a gazebo.

Housing Co-op

Student Council discussed the administration’s decision to turn down a proposal for a student-run housing co-op. Council members said that they would be interested in continuing a dialogue in regard to the co-op with the administration.

Several members, including Stitt and Ben Hattem ’11, Financial Policy Representative, felt that the administration did not consider the StuCo recommendation in favor of the co-op after it had been requested by the administration.

Bike Share Program

Bryant said that the bike share program would be in operation beginning today. However, the helmets for the bikes are not yet available. Bryant said that StuCo has the helmets but must speak with the library in regard to where the helmets will be stored. Bryant hopes the helmets will be available for rental with the bikes by next week.

Fireside Chat

On February 21, StuCo will be hosting an open fireside chat. StuCo discussed possible topics for the chat before deciding on an admissions and financial aid-related topic through a vote.

Originally, StuCo had planned to discuss student and community spaces at the chat and felt that this topic would raise concerns not discussed at the Board of Managers meeting scheduled for the week before. However, several StuCo members worried that a chat on student spaces might not be as relevant during the strategic planning process as other potential topics.

StuCo then brainstormed alternative chat topics before voting among three: faculty and course diversity, admissions and financial aid, and student and community spaces. After student and community spaces was eliminated in a preliminary vote, a majority of Council members voted for admissions and financial aid to be the topic of February’s chat. StuCo will email Liz Braun, Dean of Students, to propose this topic.

StuCo will be holding another fireside chat in March. Council hopes that the chats will help to set the tone for future strategic planning goals.

Long-Term Goals for the Semester

This semester, StuCo will have two long-term goal subcommittees. One will focus on moving forward with an academic support initiative, and the other will discuss the rollover initiative. StuCo members will choose which committee they will serve on this week.

Other Notes

  • Miyuki Baker ‘11 will create art pieces advertising cable on dorm TVs. The posters are meant to remind students that TVs have cable and will list the channels available.
  • StuCo members met with President Chopp last week and discussed the Swarthmore Town Center West project. Council discussed the possibility of the college self-developing the inn, bookstore, and restaurant.
The Phoenix