Profesor Paul Derby’s Community Action Seminar class’ suggestion board has drawn quite a bit of attention on campus the past few weeks. The board, originally on display in the first floor lobby of Leavenworth Hall , is now inspiring people to talk about how changes can be made.
The board was open for students to write down suggestions on how to improve Castleton, which 110 took advantage of. Derby’s class is trying to make sure that the process does not end there.
On April 17, Derby and students Lene Ballard, Stephanie Johnson, and Cynthia Renninger, met with the Student Association to see what they could do to make the ideas come to life. They concentrated on three of the most popular suggestions: parking, food, and the lack of masters programs at C.S.C.
For parking, they offered suggestions like assigning parking to students by their year or their GPA. They also raised possibility of adding more parking spaces on campus and discussed the possibility of not allowing students to have a vehicle on campus until their sophomore year.
To improve the food in Huden Dining Hall, they asked if there was a way to get a better quality of food than Aramark currently serves. They also proposed the idea of allowing student’s meal points to work at the Castleton Deli or Birdseye Diner. In addition, they raised the idea of making the meals more affordable to students who do not have a meal plan and don’t want to pay the $8.50 out-of-plan rate.
Steven Vail, president of the S.A., said he’s glad the students came to the meeting with hopes for action. He informed them that after the S.A. hears the suggestions he brings them to Wolk, hopefully to bring change. Vail sounded optimistic and gacve Derby and his class reason to be hopeful.
“I don’t want you to leave thinking these issues are on the backburner because they’re not,” he said
The S.A. has $60,000 in its account and Derby’s class hopes part of that can be used to make some of the suggested improvements. The S.A. has yet to decide how it will spend that money, but Vail said, “these issues shoot up to the top of the list.”
After the meeting concluded, Renninger said, “they seemed very enthusiastic about it.
“I felt worried, but now I think that something will happen.”
The other class representatives also felt positive about the meeting, saying making these improvements will also help the S.A. to become more recognized.
Outside of Fireside, on April 21, Derby’s class had a second board on display that gave results from the previous board. It also had space for students to write down how they would improve the food and parking on campus, how students thought the S.A. should spend its money, and whether students thought a free space for students to write down ideas should be a permanent fixture at Castleton.
Responses quickly filled the board as students wrote down a variety of suggestions for each topic. One student from Derby’s class, Dan Lazorchak, said the simply wants as many suggestions as possible to help improve the college.
“This helps, but there are still lots of students we aren’t hearing from,” he said. Lazorchak hopes that eventually every student will become more involved in improving the college.