An Open Forum on the controversial cable TV issue on Castleton’s campus is high on the Student Government Association’s agenda – and will likely be held within the next week or two.
Last June students were notified of the termination of cable, but it came with a promise to quintuple the bandwidth providing faster Internet speeds to stream applications like Netflix and Hulu.
The Open Forum is not yet scheduled, but SGA members say it will be an event for students and faculty to discuss the ongoing issues surrounding cable and Internet.
SGA leaders at their weekly meeting last week said they understand many students are upset with the changes and termination of cable on campus.
However, not all SGA members agree with reinstalling cable.
“There really isn’t money to make the change,” said Hollie Nop, SGA secretary.
Matt Patry, director of Student Activities, was concerned about student’s ability to access the news. He brought up the example of the Boston bombings and how everyone was huddled around the screen watching the coverage live.
Catherine Wielgasz, vice president of academics, is worried about possible illegal actions being taken by students due to the lack of cable.
“They’re looking to us,” said Wielgasz. “They must find ways to watch their shows.”
The forum, to discuss issues like these, is being spearheaded by Faucher, who feels it is among her duties as delegate to help solve problems on campus.
“The students deserve to get their voices heard by school officials,” she said
Dean of Students Dennis Proulx understands the students dissatisfaction, but stressed the reasoning behind the loss of cable.“We moved the cable money into Internet,” he said. “We had a tough decision to make. It was not an easy one, and it wasn’t going to satisfy everybody. But we still had to make it.”
But is the Internet truly better?
Sophomore Mychael McQuiggan doesn’t agree.
“It’s like we have the same bad Wi-Fi, but without cable,” he said.
But Proulx said the problems are not with the Internet itself.
“In the open forum, I’m hoping to have IT there to explain why the Internet is better and why individuals who are having problems should consult with IT to decide if it’s the point of service of their Wi-Fi that has been an issue,” he said
Junior Graeme Pike thinks the forum will be the perfect opportunity to let administration know his thoughts.
“I’m gonna have to set my foot down right then and there, and let them know that I want cable back,” he said.
While many students are outraged, Faucher recognizes both sides of the conflict.
“At first I was definitely upset, like the rest of the students, but I feel like talking to administrators has shaped my understanding of why cable was taken away,” she said.
Faucher feels the forum could be a place for administration and students to find a common ground.
“I’m not sure if it will bring cable back, but it will help the administration see and hear the students outlooks on it,” she said.
The forum is expected to be hosted in early November during N-Period, Faucher said.
Isaac Devoid, Sara Novernstern, Courtney Shannon and Jadie Dow contributed to this report.