As per tradition, Pipe Dream looks back on the good, the bad and the ugly of the past semester’s newsworthy moments. Here it is, your spring 2012 report card.
President Stenger: A-
Harvey Stenger’s debut here has been a resounding success, mostly. His plans for the future of Binghamton University have been transparent and inclusive, which was a welcome departure from the opaqueness of administrations past.
BU’s president has also made a concerted effort to be more than just a faceless bureaucrat; it’s not an uncommon sight to see him walking, eating and otherwise socializing with students. He is affable and unpretentious, and seems genuinely interested in the students he meets — another encouraging sign for the future.
We hope Stenger stays on the receptive and student-oriented path he’s on. We find no fault with Stenger’s policies so far, but it’s too early for a comprehensive evaluation of his performance and a perfect “A,” just because we’re a touch withholding and there is always potential for improvement. We hope at this time next year — or maybe even next semester — we can give him full marks.
Spring Fling: B
While Timeflies and The Cataracs, the bands that opened for Passion Pit, were nothing to get excited about — in fact, we’re pretty sure The Cataracs were actually just pressing play on their iTunes — this year’s Spring Fling was actually a success, despite the jungle of red tape that could’ve dulled it down.
Passion Pit put on a great show, and the Peace Quad was a perfect venue for the carnival. We only wish the concert could have taken place there, too: the perfect weather and the Super Moon were too good to miss.
The Greek Life Investigation: C
While we commend the clampdown on Greek Life and the focus on ridding the system of hazing, we feel that the Dean of Students’ office displayed startling ineptitude in dealing with the reports, and in some ways acted almost as if the halt to pledging was as much of a surprise to them as it was to the students.
Many groups had no idea whether or not they were under investigation and the system the University devised to allow some groups to continue pledging — which took an oddly long period of time to get in place — aptly reminded us of “Double Secret Probation.”
The lack of communication shown by the dean’s office throughout the process is disheartening and the University has repeatedly declined to release any details about the current state of the investigation.
The Dean of Students’ office should not be exempt from the transparency President Stenger appears committed to and we hope the relationship between the University and Greek Life improves moving forward.
We’re certainly glad to hear our peers speak at commencement about their experiences here. But it would be nice to have a relatively well-known, or at least entertaining, speaker as well. Syracuse got their famed alum Aaron Sorkin; Rochester Institute of Technology got Bill Nye the Science Guy.
We know BU isn’t necessarily the most prestigious college around, but come on, give us someone.
Instructor Evaluation Surveys: D-
The SOOT surveys are a waste of everyone’s time. Not only are they voluntary for students, but professors don’t have to hand them in to administration. And there is no indication that the marks students give teachers have any impact on their tenure here. Either make the surveys count for something or wait … there should be no other option. As of now, we don’t see a point to their existence.