Gazebo, Bag Lunch Survey, and Meal Plans

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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

After negotiations with the Engineering Department met a dead-end, Victor Brady ’13, Campus Life Representative, and Ben Hattem ’12, Financial Policy Representative, met with Stu Hain, Vice President for Facilities and Services, on Friday to discuss other options for building the Gazebo.

As one option, StuCo and Hain are contemplating hiring the services of the Pittsburgh-based gazebocreations.com—a “reputable organization” according to Brady—for the installation of the gazebo on campus.

Hain raised concerns about the durability of such an edifice considering the heavy usage that would occur with a campus population of approximately 1500 students. Moreover, Hain emphasized that any agreement with such a business would have to include a lifetime guarantee.

Bagged Lunch Survey

Based on results of the bagged lunch survey conducted two weeks ago, Dining Services will be piloting a vegan bean dish on Thursday instead of the vegan hummus option.

Those who often or sometimes took the vegan bagged lunch reported greater dissatisfaction with their Tuesday and Thursday meals in the survey.

Dining Services would like to hear feedback from students regarding the new bean dish and would appreciate comments on this Gazette article to gauge student opinion on the change.

Meal Plan Flexibility

A student’s suggestion of an ‘opt-in’ meal system, in which each student’s unused meals every week get donated to groups that require the food donations, was held to be financially unviable by Dining Services. This is because the budget for Dining Services is largely based on the number of students’ unused meals per week.

Furthermore, Dining Services neither have the accounting capacity nor the technology necessary to accommodate this the plan.

New StuCo Website

StuCo is launching a new website next week that incorporates all their various strands of work in one location.

Details on StuCo’s short-term and long-term goals, the weekly meeting minutes, the resource guide for students, and new initiatives will be available.

StuCo plans to have it linked to the Dash next week.

Email Policy

StuCo has completed initial rounds of discussion for formulating an email policy for groups on campus.

Members mooted the possibility of including the extent of access to the student-body emails on each group’s charter and then, if necessary, going over unique requests on a case-to-case basis. Access will be granted if groups need the emails on a consistent basis for a valid reason.

Thus, StuCo may collaborate with the Chartering Committee in order to implement an email policy for student groups.

StuCo members added that any possible emails would have to affect the entire student body and be endorsed by StuCo.

Ville Meal Points

After Brady and Hattem met with Sue Welsh, Vice President for Finance and Treasurer, it was decided that, in light of all the logistical difficulties, a Ville meal points program was not worth the expenditure.

It would be very costly for Dining Services in the initial years and would result in staff redundancies.

It was agreed that the proposal is a symptom of student dissatisfaction with the quality of food on campus, rather than a willingness to expand the program to the Ville.

Smaller-scale alternatives are still being debated, like the possibility of transferring meal points to a separate meal card, which can then be used like a debit card for buying goods from businesses in the Ville.

Academic Support

Instead of bringing a three-person panel to discuss course diversity, StuCo has decided to extend a sole invitation to Gary Okihiro, a scholar of Ethic Studies, with the intent of discussing whether Swarthmore should introduce an Ethnic Studies department.

A date for the talk has been tentatively set in mid-April.

The Phoenix