Officers’ Summit determines five issues to be addressed

ALEX NASH / The Journal Students cast their votes on what issues they feel should comprise the Delegates’ Agenda Feb. 3. Administrators will judge what actions should be taken when addressing these issues.

Anurag Bhattacharyya stood in Sunnen Lounge in front of her peers during this semester’s Officers’ Summit, suggesting an idea for the spring 2012 Delegates’ Agenda. She proposed there be specific scholarships offered to international students on both graduate and undergraduate levels.  After students voted for their top five choices, Bhattacharyya’s idea made the list.
Webster’s biannual Officers’ Summit took place at 12 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 3. There were around 25 students who presented issues to the room.  Many different ideas surfaced, but only five were selected; these issues will be presented to administration at the Delegates’ Agenda.
Students representing Webster organizations lined up to sign in before the event. When the floor opened for student issues to be addressed, different students stood one at a time, introduced themselves and presented their issue.
Bhattacharyya is an advertising and marketing communications graduate student at Webster. She completed her undergraduate degree in India, her native country, and came to Webster in January 2011 to receive her master’s.  After asking other international students and researching, Bhattacharyya was surprised she found no scholarships specifically for international students.
“(In India), the exchange rate is a lot higher than in America, if you consider the value of the currency,” Bhattacharyya said. “So, it is a lot of money for us. And if you consider that, I think a scholarship would make a lot of sense.”
Among the top five issues was a request for storage space for student organizations. The garage next to the Sam H. Priest house and the Pearson house was suggested as a potential space for student organizations to store their supplies.
The suggestion that there should be more ID card readers to access buildings on campus also made it to the top five. Students agreed that, particularly at night, there should be more security with the ID cards.
Students discussed that updates to classroom furniture, and better-looking classrooms overall, is another issue that should be addressed.
Brittnee Bauman is a freshman economics major who stood to present her opinion on this issue. Bauman said she is bothered when she sees different sets of chairs and desks in classrooms, along with doorways that need to be refinished and chipping paint throughout campus buildings.
“You are here for your education and the environment you are learning in is very important,” Bauman said. “We need to get everything up to the point of where the new business school is.”
Students also suggested a wellness and recreation center should be included in the new master plan for Webster, along with more student involvement and consideration in that master plan.
The last issue of the five was that there should be Webster scholarships offered to international students.
“I thought, ‘If I’m from another country and I’m doing just as well as any other student, there should be a motivation of encouraging education for international students,’” Bhattacharyya said.
As the chosen presenters move forth, they will attend an institute Friday, Feb. 10, to learn more about the presentation process. They will narrow their issues in order to research possible solutions. Student volunteer presenters will present their ideas to President Beth Stroble and the rest of the administrative council at the Delegates’ Agenda on Thursday, Feb. 23.

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