The independent student newspaper of Goucher College

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The Quindecim

The Quindecim has 75 articles published.

It’s More than the Title – Crazy Rich Asians

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For the first time in a quarter of a century, Hollywood has made a rom-com movie with an all Asian cast entitled Crazy Rich Asians. Starring Constance Wu, Harry Shum Jr, Awkwafina, Ken Jeong, Remmy Tan, Michelle Yeoh, Henry Golding and so many more, the lineup is breaking grounds. This book turned movie is hitting the big screen on August 17, 2018 and is one of the few blockbuster films starring Asians in lead roles (but the only one with a full Asian cast) this summer. Backed by Warner Brothers and directed by Jon M. Chu, known for Justin Bieber: Never Say Never, Step Up and Now You See Me 2, the trailer for the highly anticipated movie dropped on April 23 on The Ellen Show.

Now, for some, the plot may seem a bit too generic. Rich man falls in love with a poor woman, decides to introduce her to his family, his mother doesn’t think the woman is good enough, and hilarity/drama ensues. But for the Asian American community, this is a huge deal. For, in Hollywood, Asian American representation is not very common since the practice of whitewashing of roles in major films is very frequent. With the most publicized of these being Emma Stone in Aloha, Tilda Swinton in Doctor Strange, Scarlett Johansson in Ghost in a Shell, basically the whole cast of The Last Airbender, and Matt Smith in The Great Wall. Even Crazy Rich Asians and the soon to be made, live-action Mulan, almost became the victim of whitewashing too. And so, while YouTube creators like Wong Fu Productions, Anna Akana, and Domics produce lots of stories about the Asian American/mundane experiences of life, and television shows like Fresh Off the Boat, My Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Dr. Kim and Master of None fill in some of the gaps with regards to representation for Asian Americans, the impact is not the same.

However, with all the fanfare around this film, it should be noted that the movie does not represent every Asian American experience. I mean, how could it? It’s an hour to two-hour long film! But if anyone wants to hear more about this topic, the YouTube channel FUNG BROS did a video called CRAZY RICH ASIANS – WHY YOU SHOULD NOT WATCH IT AND WHY YOU SHOULD.

This conversation about what the movie means is only a small part of a much larger discussion. No matter how one spins it, Crazy Rich Asians is a step forward towards representation in the media for Asians and Asian Americans.

Photo Credit: Google Images

Goucher Assesses Academic Programs

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Goucher is currently undergoing a Program Prioritization Process. This process takes stock of programs that are currently in place and determines which programs are “healthy,” and “along the way we should discover what is working and not working within the programs,” according to Dr. Micah Webster, the faculty chair and Associate Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science.

The goal of program prioritization is to develop an understanding of the institution and its programs in order to direct Goucher’s resources towards programs that support the institution’s goals. To clarify, “program” refers to a course of study requiring the completion of a specified number of semester credit hours from among a prescribed group of courses that leads to a formal award, ie. majors and minors (Source: MHEC).

The data collection process for the prioritization process began last semester and should be completed by mid-June, according to Dr. Webster. This process is being conducted by the Office of Institutional Effectiveness, the Office of Admissions, the Office of the Provost, and the programs themselves.

A committee of faculty that includes the Curriculum and Budget & Planning Committees, as well as tenured and non-tenured faculty, and representatives from all major faculty committees, work with the Provost to make recommendations to the Board of Trustees. According to Professor Ann Duncan, the Chair of the Academic Policies Committee, though the process is intended to be faculty led, because the Board of Trustees set the process in motion, it will be they who decide if the faculty plan sufficiently addresses the college’s needs.

The “Why”
Program prioritization programs tend to begin for financial reasons. According to Robert C. Dickeson, who wrote an influential book entitled Prioritizing Academic Programs and Services: Reallocating Resources to Achieve Strategic Balance, the most commonly cited reason for program prioritization is financial stress. Other reasons may include prioritization being a recurring process or part of strategic planning overall, the unacceptability of making equivalent cuts in all programs, and the governing board wanting the college to prioritize. According to Professor Duncan, while the process is intended to be conducted independently of dollar amounts, “the Board of Trustees hopes this process will save money by right sizing the faculty to fit our student body.”

When interviewed, President Jose Bowen emphasized that the process is “routine.” Goucher’s last program prioritization ended in 2014, before the start of President Bowen’s tenure at Goucher, during which the process recommended the elimination of Chinese and additions to the Psychology Department.

President Bowen cited a couple reasons for Goucher’s current program prioritization: the college is scheduled for re-accreditation, and hopes to expand in the future. In order to expand and to create new programs, the college must withdraw resources from existing programs. “You can’t keep adding. At some point, you either add, or you move things around,” said President Bowen.

By keeping tuition costs the same for one year and choosing to increase tuition by only 1.9% in 2018-19, President Bowen has committed to making Goucher more affordable. However, this means a decrease in net tuition revenue for the college, while inflation continues to increase. It also means that existing programs cannot be added to if costs are to remain the same. If student class sizes shrink, faculty must be reduced.

One possible solution to rising costs is increasing costs is changing the faculty-to-student ratio. “Costs are getting so prohibitive that there has been more openness to different size classes and different pedagogy,” said education consulting firm leader Kent John Chabotar, as cited in an article entitled “Tuition Conundrum,” published on InsideHigherEd.com. Of course, this also means reducing the numbers of faculty.

According to President Bowen, Goucher’s student-faculty ratio hasn’t changed, and the future size of the faculty will depend in part on the size of incoming classes. “If we grow [the student body] a little bit, we’ll add faculty,” said President Bowen. “If we shrink a little bit, then we’ll reduce faculty.” According to the President, the goal for Goucher in future years is to “grow slowly.”
It seems unlikely, however, that class sizes will grow. Colleges are facing financial trouble across the country, particularly small liberal arts colleges. President Bowen discussed the fact that there are fewer college students across the country than there were ten years ago, so colleges are competing for a smaller pool of students. “Right now, there are a million fewer people in college than there were in 2010,” said Bowen. “So there are fewer people going to college [and in that smaller pool] there are more people going to state institutions.”

Despite this, Goucher plans to remain a liberal arts institution. When asked what his vision was for Goucher five years down the road, Bowen said, “The truth is, that if I am really successful, if Goucher is really successful, we will remain a liberal arts college. That may sound less ambitious, but we may be the last liberal arts college. Because if you read the paper, they’re closing, they’re merging, they’re adding other kinds of things, they’re adding [vocational] programs…We want to be a liberal arts college. So what matters is how we do that. What kind of instruction do we offer? How do we keep classes nice and small?”

The “How”
The “how” is where program prioritization comes in. However, while the process is intended to ultimately benefit the college, this does not come without difficulties. The process may result in recommendations to eliminate positions or cut back current programs. Because of the instability and insecurity that this creates, faculty and staff may be concerned about the future of their programs and positions throughout this process. “Those things are painful, but they are part of the normal process,” said President Bowen.

Because the program prioritization process is faculty-run, it also involves additional work for professors. Faculty must come to an agreement about how to best measure the effectiveness of programs and then collect all the relevant data. According to Professor Ann Duncan, one challenge has been that, when this process was announced, the faculty were already hard at work on implementing the new curriculum. Much of the work on the new curriculum has been stalled until staffing numbers and program status are clear.

According to Duncan, “faculty are incredibly excited about the new curriculum and the creativity and interdisciplinarity it allows.” However, it will be a while before it is put in place across the board. For the next two years, faculty must run two different curriculums at the same time, as some students remain with the Liberal Education Requirements, while others are fullfing the new general education requirements, called Goucher Commons Requirements.
Once the program prioritization process is complete, faculty may also need to determine how to implement the new curriculum with fewer faculty. “We passed this curriculum with a certain sized faculty and with even the promise that we might be able to grow a little,” said Professor Duncan. “The reality now is that there are a lot of positions that have not been filled and we may be losing some positions.”

On a national level, one of the largest issues facing program prioritization programs is a lack of faculty buy-in. Despite this, members of Goucher’s faculty do understand the need for a response to the current challenges in higher education, and express concern for Goucher’s future. “The faculty recognize that times are tight financially, not just for Goucher but for colleges across the country,” said Professor Duncan. “At the same time, we want to ensure that any process we participate in maintains the integrity of the Goucher education.” At this stage, the effects of the process remain to be seen.

The Curriculum and Budget & Planning Committees have formed the criteria for the evaluation of programs, which are: relevance, efficiency, opportunity analysis, evidence of impact. These categories include factors like relevance, alignment with college mission, internal and external demand for program, teaching effectiveness in programs, contributions to and in support of the programs, numbers of students in the program, evidence of engagement with students, operational efficiency of the program, etc.

Goucher faculty have also asked administration to consider a voluntary separation program, which would provide financial benefits for faculty who decide to voluntarily leave the college. This program would benefit the college by generating compensation savings that can be spent in other ways, while the faculty member would benefit from both the financial benefits and the voluntary nature of the program.

Correction: Edits for clarity have been made to the fourth paragraph.

MADELINE ST. JOHN and GREER TURNER

Featured Image Credit: Projects · Ziger/Snead Architects

Goucher Says Farewell to Professors

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Throughout the course of a college’s life, professors come and go, leaving behind legacies that carry their names forward. Sadly, it is time to say goodbye to several committed faculty members of Goucher College. In 1983, when Goucher was still an all-women’s college and the Quindecim was called “The Weekly” (a strange name for a paper that was published once every two weeks), Barbara Roswell had just been hired as a writing professor. She will retire this year. Why? When asked, she chuckled, saying “I think a change once every thirty-five years is okay.”

Dr. Roswell and coworker, Mary Jo Wiese, are well known for their work n the Goucher Prison Education Partnership, a program which strives to give a college education to incarcerated members of society. “My two brothers are both judges in Ohio; my father also served as a judge. I grew up believing in the integrity of the judicial system” says Wiese, who is also leaving this year, “but, over time, I became painfully aware that we have a penal system, and not a correctional system.” Starting with a special edition of Reflections, a journal that was edited by Dr. Roswell, these professors saw the learning potential in those incarcerated in prison. Over the years, the program has changed the lives of potential students residing in the Maryland Correctional Institution for Women in Jessup, Maryland. Professor Wiese’s husband is also retiring from his job this year, and they plan to travel together.

Professor Jeanne-Rachel Leroux will also be leaving this year, having accepted a teaching position in Staten Island, New York. Before coming to Goucher, Professor Leroux taught at several public high schools in Japan, as well as one international school. She came to Goucher five years ago, and has lived with her students in the Language House ever since.“I liked the Language House aspect of the contract. It allows me to interact with students outside of the classroom.” As the live-in professor for Language House, Professor Leroux oversaw many of the language-oriented events held there. Whether it be cooking events, language meetings, or just the community environment, Jeanne-Rachel Leroux was heavily involved in the community and will be remembered for bringing students together.

Her track is not unique for aspiring professors. Professor Leroux was at Goucher on a contractual basis, which would be renewed after several years if all went well. However, it is now time for her to settle into a more permanent position. “I have a lecturer position at CSI next year… It’s a relief to have a long-term contract because I have not had that. Almost ever,” Professor Leroux said. Obtaining a long term contract with a university can be difficult. Professors must build up experience before being asked to hold a long-term position, and must be able to go where the offers take them.

Associate Professor of Philosophy Margaret Grebowicz will be leaving Goucher as well, and will be remembered for her diverse legacy. From her books (Whale Song, The National Park to Come) to her effort to translate Polish poems into English, she has been a very accomplished and well-liked professor. “She was really engaging and caring for her students and added a special dimension to the philosophy department” says Dustin Taylor, a senior philosophy major.

We must also say goodbye to Professor Bernadette Tutinas, Associate Professor of Mathematics. Professor Tutinas is the longest standing professor to leave Goucher this year, and has taught everything from MA100 to MA333. Known for her specialty in Graph Theory and Combinatorics, she engaged students in all different disciplines, spreading math along the way “Mathematics is important and useful, but it is also beautiful in its patterns and rhythms. One of the greatest pleasures of teaching is helping students to see this beauty,” says Professor Tutinas. Goucher has changed tremendously since her tenure began, as it was not yet co-ed in 1981. Though the school has and will continue to change, her contributions to the college will surely not be forgotten.

Finally, Dr. George Delahunty will be leaving as well. He is the Lilian Welsh Professor of Biology at Goucher College. With a specialization in Physiology/Endocrinology, Dr. Delahunty was responsible for numerous biology courses at Goucher College, from Intro to Biology II to Endocrinology. Dr. Delahunty engaged a wide range of students with his expertise and anecdotal information. “He’s really well versed in all the material he teaches and always has extra fun facts or examples to share with us”, says senior Spanish major Maggie Ratrie. He will be remembered for his impressive knowledge of the field and ability to engage students from any major.

While it’s saddening to say goodbye to the professors we love, it’s important that we remember them fondly. The legacies of educators are measured by their impacts on students, and everyone remembers an educational experience that changed their lives. Although these professors will no longer be changing lives at Goucher, teachers are always out to educate, no matter where they are. Or, as retiring professor Barbara Roswell puts it, “Often the most exciting things we can do together are just having a group of people sitting around in a circle, talking about a text.”

JOSHUA GREENBERG (Contributor from the Goucher Eye)

Featured Image: patch.com

Mental Health Resources

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In order to clear up any confusion that may have been caused by an article published in the previous issue of the Q, the counseling center has a number of resources and systems in place that ensure that no student ever has to wait to speak with a mental health professional.

Student experiences with counseling center services are generally very positive—when surveyed, positive student feedback was higher than the national average, with 37% of students reporting counseling services as “very helpful” (as compared with the national average of 31%). The counseling center has also been able to meet the needs of 86% of students who have come to the counseling center, with 14% having been referred off campus.

The administration is also currently working to improve mental health and mental health treatment on campus, through efforts like partnering with the JED Foundation, constructing new counseling center facilities, conducting an environmental survey, and hiring a wellness coordinator.

Jean Perez, the Director of Sports Medicine, was recently named Director of Student Wellness. Her role, in her words, is to “coordinate a more holistic approach to well-being on campus, provide resources for students that address all dimensions of wellness, and to collaborate with other areas to integrate what all of the different offices are already doing to contribute to overall student well-being.” Part of this process will be to hire a campus recreation coordinator, who will “coordinate our club and intramural sports, create a campus recreation program and grow our outdoor adventure programming.”

There is also an abundance of people, offices, and resources available on campus that may be useful for students’ mental health—but sometimes it can seem like a bit of a scavenger hunt trying to find the right people or resources. The Q has compiled a list of these resources in efforts to make this process a little bit easier.

Name Contact Person Role Location

Counseling Resources

Counseling Center Counseling sessions are free and confidential. The center offers brief, individual counseling (typically less than 12 sessions), although there is no hard limit on the number of sessions students can have. The center typically schedules in-person intakes within 1-3 days. Even if there is a waitlist, students will still be able to complete an intake and no student with imminent safety concerns will be placed on a waitlist. Clinicians are trained in various empirically-supported treatment modalities appropriate to address a broad range of student experiences, symptoms, and diagnoses.  For students in need of specialized or long-term therapy options, community providers may be recommended. For more information: https://www.goucher.edu/experience/staying-healthy/counseling-services/ First floor of Huebeck (moving to Mary Fisher)
Urgent Walk-in Hours at the Counseling Center Monday – Friday at 1pm. Walk in to the counseling center if you are experiencing a mental health emergency.
After Hours Mental Health Hotline To speak with a mental health counselor after hours, call 855-236-4278. This service provides phone support by licensed clinicians. This is not just a crisis hotline—the clinicians can provide support for something more benign all the way up to suicidal ideation. As opposed to a national hotline, this service is provided in partnership with Goucher’s Counseling Center.   Clinicians are aware of resources both on and off campus.
Baltimore County Crisis Hotline 410-931-2214 A 24-hour hotline staffed by mental health professionals. The hotline is also connected with a Mobile Response Team of mental health clinicians and police officers that offer emergency responses to persons in need of urgent intervention.
Hospitalization Goucher has a memo of understanding with St. Joseph’s Medical Center to encourage ease of communication. If a student opts for hospitalization, they will be transported to the hospital in an ambulance, for safety reasons and in order to receive more immediate treatment. Clinicians work with students to explain the process.
Medical Withdrawal Andrew Wu manages the medical leave policy and consults with the counseling center concerning students returning from medical leave. For more information: https://www.goucher.edu/registrar/leave-of-absence-withdrawal-from-the-college/medical-compassionate-withdrawal-procedures
Psychiatry Services and the Health Center 410-337-6050 Students have access to psychiatry six hours a week through health services. First Floor of Huebeck

Committees

JED Committee Cameron Cox

Monica Neel

Andrew Wu

A committee formed through Goucher’s partnership with the JED foundation. Chaired by Cameron Cox, and led by Andrew Wu and Monica Neel, the group discusses what the college could be doing better in terms of mental health.
GSG Student Life Committee Noah Block

noah.block@mail.goucher.edu

Goucher Student Government committee working around wellness, mental health, and other aspects of student life on campus. Meets in Office of Student Engagement

People and Offices

Jean Perez (New Wellness Coordinator) jean.perez@goucher.edu “My role is to coordinate a more holistic approach to well-being on campus, provide resources for students that address all dimensions of wellness, and to collaborate with other areas to integrate what all of the different offices are already doing to contribute to overall student well-being.

Part of that is the hiring of a campus recreation coordinator, who will coordinate our club and intramural sports, create a campus recreation program and grow our outdoor adventure programming.  Her office will be located in one of the new residence halls (building 1C), in the Wellness Resource Center. We will also be opening an equipment issue room in the Sports and Recreation Center where students can rent out various sports equipment.”

Peer Listeners 443-632-7799 Peer listeners are available from 7pm-2am every night. Peer listening occurs in person. Every semester, there is a week long peer listening training, during which Peer Listeners do role playing and focus on listening skills and some content areas, such as stress, anxiety, sexual assault, and depression. They are trained in basic resources on campus so that they can provide references. They don’t offer personal advice. Peer listeners are a very confidential resource because they don’t report out–they report up, to Cynthia Terry. The program, developed by Roshelle Kades, has been in existence for over 7 years.
Office of Religious and Spiritual Life Chaplain Cynthia Terry

cynthia.terry@goucher.edu

and Rabbi Josh Snyder

josh.snyder@goucher.edu

Cynthia Terry: “As chaplain of this community, I am eager to work with all members of the Goucher College community—students, faculty, and staff—as they explore their spiritual values and commitments, express their religious traditions, search for meaning and value, and seek answers to their questions. I also understand that, as chaplain, I can be a companion in life’s journey, through the painful places of illness, depression, addiction, grief, and abuse, as well as through joyful celebrations of achievement, accomplishment, and important relationships.  I am a confidential resource.”

Rabbi Josh: “As a Rabbi, I’m available to students for pastoral counseling as they desire.  That doesn’t mean religion has to be a part of it, though questions of spirituality and meaning arise.  I’m available to any student regardless of religious background, and I can be emailed to set up a time. Mostly I am an active listener, a first step, and can help recommend other resources for students to seek out.”

Chapel (Chaplain); Interfaith Center (Rabbi)
Office of Student Development and Outreach Cameron Cox

Cameron.Cox@goucher.edu

and Alexandra Graves

alexandra.graves@goucher.edu

In the Office of Student Development and Outreach, Cameron and Alexandra support students through prevention, intervention, and support efforts for students across campus.  Both members of the office serve as case managers, supporting students facing hardships, those experiencing crises, and those struggling with other common barriers to success. We work differently with each student, so students have a personalized guide to help them develop and execute a support plan to get back on track.  Cameron and Alexandra assist students through various challenges such as: academic concerns, social/emotional distress, and other personal conflicts. In addition, Cameron serves as chair for the JED committee, a mental healthcare program on Goucher’s Campus, runs the Brother to Brother Affinity program, and serves as a member of the Residence Life staff.  Alexandra helps in leadership efforts for the department, works with students returning to campus from a leave of absence, and is currently working on the development of resiliency programming at the college.

You can learn more by visiting the Student Development and Outreach website, https://www.goucher.edu/experience/staying-healthy/case-management-and-student-support/

If you want to meet with Alexandra or Cameron, you can email us directly at care@goucher.edu

Welsh 205
Office of Accessibility Services Arnell Hadley

Best way to contact: email (access@goucher.edu or arnelle.hanley@goucher.edu ) or set up a Starfish appointment.

Office of Accessibility Services works with Goucher’s Counseling Services and Case Management Services.  Together we work to connect students to the appropriate resources on or off campus. Additionally, Arnelle frequently works with some student’s providers on creating accommodations that are appropriate for the various stages of their mental health. Her communication with the student and their provider is ongoing as things can change at any moment. Alumnae/i House 120
Office of Community-Based Learning (CBL) Santa Wallace sawallac@goucher.edu

Lindsay Johnson

lijohnso@goucher.edu

Cass Freedland

cassia.freedland@goucher.edu

The Office of Community-Based Learning (CBL) offers structured opportunities for engaging in community-based work, both through reflective volunteerism and classes that link their course content to off-campus community experiences. The connection between well-being and community engagement has received a great deal of scholarly attention; in fact, last year, Goucher’s CBL Office was part of a four-campus national study on well-being and thoughtful civic engagement. Studies have found that the work itself can be psychologically rewarding through connection with others in the community. In addition to this, when guided and reflected upon, community-based learning though volunteerism and classes can help to:

  • build one’s sense of a civic society
  • promote feelings of independence and freedom
  • encourage one to better understand one’s own privilege and identify power structures within colleges and communities,
  • and develop social connections that promote general well-being.

The Office of Community-Based Learning, in The Arsht Center for Ethics and Leadership, welcomes students to engage in one of our 8 volunteer programs, learn more about our Student Leaders for Civic Action program, or embrace the 30+ academic courses that incorporate community engagement each academic year.

Come to Van Meter 105 to talk and enjoy a cup of coffee or tea, or visit our website at https://www.goucher.edu/learn/beyond-the-classroom/community-based-learning/.
Title IX Office Lucia Perfetti Clark: lucia.perfetticlark@goucher.edu

and Peer Educators

The Office of Title IX connects students to short-term resources such as legal counsel and other victim services. Lucia oversees the sexual misconduct policy and the nondiscrimination policy. The Office only provides accommodations when a student requests them specifically, as each case they handle is unique.

Goucher Title IX: https://www.goucher.edu/title-ix/

ACE (Academic Center for Excellence) https://www.goucher.edu/learn/academic-support-and-resources/ace/request-an-appointment ACE provides self care sessions that include Sleep-Based meditation known as Yoga Nidra that supports the immune system and helps with restoring the mindbody and improves memory and retention.  Academic Coaching sessions with Peejo Sehr are centered around mind/body practices that address academic success from a holistic wellness lens. ACE offers holistic Academic Support and is not a mental health support provider. Our programs are focused primarily on stress management to support academic learning.

For more info: https://www.goucher.edu/learn/academic-support-and-resources/ace/

Julia Rogers Building, room 233
First Year Mentors First Year Mentors receive training about the transition to college and how that transition can impact mental health. In training, First Year Mentors talk in general about different situations involving mental health and how to refer students to the proper resources. Mentors help their group of first year students in their transition to college, and students can contact their First Year Mentor if they would like help figuring out where to go next.

Groups for students

RIO (Recognition, Insight, Openness) Tim Moslener (Counselor)

tim.moslener@goucher.edu

RIO stands for Recognition, Insight, Openness. The psychoeducation-based group is built around skill development and actively engaging in self-Reflection and learning. There are multiple sessions over the course of the semester, so there is always one about to open up again. Contact Tim Moslener for more information.
Meditation Group The Meditation Group meets weekly in the Chapel Undercroft, an excellent opportunity to learn and practice meditation. Chapel Undercroft
Student Bereavement Group Cynthia Terry

cynthia.terry@goucher.edu

Each semester, Cynthia Terry offers a Bereavement Group for students who are dealing with the loss of someone important to them. Chapel Undercroft

Events

Fresh Check Day Occurring in the fall semester, Fresh Check is a resources and activities fair with the goal of improving mental health through raising awareness of mental health challenges and providing resources with which to tackle those challenges. The event was developed and is supported by the JED Foundation, a national non-profit that works to promote emotional well-being and reduce the risk of suicide and serious substance abuse among young people.
Happiness Hunt Occurring in the spring semester, the Happiness Hunt is a multi-day campus wide group scavenger hunt involving the various offices associated with mental health resources.
Restore the Night Restore the Night is a weeklong campaign of events and workshops that intend to raise awareness, create a sense of solidarity, and ultimately work to put an end to sexual and gender-based violence. Past campaigns have included a resource fair, a masculinity workshop, an activism teach-in called “Know your Title IX,” and the creation of a zine featuring the voices of survivors.
Relaxation Stations The Office of Student Engagement (OSE) sponsors Relaxation Stations during finals week. The goal of Relaxation Stations is to offer some stress reduction activities during finals each semester as we know this is a high stress time.

Other

Kognito A self-directed avatar-based online training with specific tracks for students, faculty and staff. The training uses role play simulations of conversations to have participants try different approaches that they might use in real life and get feedback on those approaches. Made free to Maryland colleges through a statewide grant, the training is available to any interested student, faculty, or staff member at http://kognito.com/maryland. Peer Listeners and Resident Assistants have already completed the training.
Charm City Stories Intercollegiate Literary Journal for Mental and Physical Health On Friday, April 6th, Charm City Stories, Baltimore’s first student literary and art magazine of mental and physical health, released its first publication. Several Goucher students were published in the journal. The current team of Charm City Stories editors, consisting entirely of JHU students, hopes to have more students from other schools involved in editing the publication in future years. To read the publication online, visit charmcitystories.com. If you’re interested in applying for an editor position for next year, click here to fill out an application form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSeV8pkhuw70NKOcwf_rL-jcQe-CIFfAuf3sSIrOTzwAHm_TZA/viewform
Commuter Student Lounge The lounge is open to commuter students to hang out and relax. Ath 147
Groups that have existed in the past Student Health Advisory Committee (SHAC): planned events, and tabled around issues such as eating disorders, sleep, and suicide prevention.

Mediation Group: Students were trained in mediation

Other student groups that may provide spaces to destress Outdoor club, Climbing Club (rock climbing), Cooking Club
 Resource Sheet Compiled by Neve Levinson and Madeline St. John

Featured Image from OneClass 

Goucher Identity Survey and the Process Behind It

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The purpose of Peace Studies 220 is to study the nature of organizing for social change. Throughout the class, we examined social movements, identifying a movement’s origin story, structure, strategies, how to keep the movement sustainable, and also how to assess the impact of a social movement. We studied organizing tactics on the left and the right, including a field trip to seeing Bread and Puppet Theater, a theatrical, transgressive mode of resistance. Each person in this class came from a different background and expectation of the class, but the one commonality among us was the motivation to learn how to mobilize for social change.

One of the course requirements is a practicum to apply what we learned. We had the option between two routes for the practicum: to individually join an already existing movement in Baltimore and learn by attending meetings and actions, or to work together as a class and create our own mobilization force among us. After debate and deliberation, from which Professor Seble was often absent from the room, the majority of our class chose to organize as a collective. Overall our class felt it would be too much of a lost opportunity of growth as organizers and activists if we did not organize together on the college campus where we all have a sphere of influence.

The second part of this decision was deciding what we wanted to do at Goucher. Our initial brainstorms included ideas regarding environmental sustainability, accessibility for people with disabilities, Facilities Management Services, and Bon Appetit workers issues. All of these fit under the umbrella of another idea one of our classmates came up with, and that is the issue of how Goucher spends its money. We identified this issue to be the nexus of all further questions regarding the extent to which we commit to environmental sustainability, our workers, or accessibility. This question of Goucher’s resources and spending, we also felt, was an interesting one in the midst of our physically (but also maybe emotionally) massive and obstructive construction projects.

Once we agreed to this topic, more and more questions arose. Who makes the decisions? Why don’t students stay at Goucher? What even is Goucher’s identity as a school? What does our budget look like? And why don’t we know the answers to these questions? If we didn’t know the answers to these questions, did other Goucher students?

These led to more questions about the Undaunted campaign’s intention for the future of our campus, and our collective stake in this institution’s future. So, we banded together to answer questions about Goucher’s identity, which seemed to be in contention as different student groups have felt slighted or unheard. Our organizing involved research, in which we conducted interviews with several administrators and one board member to learn about Goucher’s Capital and Operating Budget, about Board meetings, and about our retention rate. We created the student survey that circulated around campus, yielding the incredible number of 255 responses, a 17.2% response rate. Our objectives as a group were to gauge student experience, educate the student body on Goucher’s budget, and to catalyze community-wide dialogue. The survey was a way of collecting data from Goucher’s student population about their expectations of Goucher versus their reality and locating sources of these discrepancies, and about student perceptions of Goucher’s identity as a school and how our spending as an institution aligns with this vision.

Our community talk-back was Wednesday, May 9th during Common Hour in the Welsh Piano Room, a public space accessible by all members of the Goucher Community (see Open Letter on pg. 14). Additionally, we took the information we gathered from our student body and provided it to the Board of Trustees by handing out leaflets to them during their May meeting.
Our hope is that the information passed on from the student body to the Board inspires questions and topics of discussion for Board members, and injects our student voices into the conversations of the most crucial decision making body of Goucher College. We know that we could not tackle this issue alone within just a semester, but we joined the student body in hopes that we might inform our peers and empower them to further advocate for their interests.

RACHEL LUCE ON BEHALF OF PEACE STUDIES 220

Featured Image: Goucher Identity Survey Results. Credit: Peace Studies 220

Goucher Poet: Rowan Youngs

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As a part of this semester’s theme of community, the Kratz Center for Creative Writing sponsored an event series called “Poetry as Community,” bringing local poets to campus. In conjunction with this theme, the Q has asked student poets to send in their own poems. This issue features a poem by senior American Studies major Rowan Youngs.

Lamp in Three Parts
1.
My friend was born with a lamp for a head.
She has lost the ability to discern between people who truly care about her and those who simply need the light.
It gets worse during the winter months—she’s almost no fun at all.

2.
First and foremost: you are not valuable in isolation. It’s important that you learn this now, so that later when the sadness arrives it can operate un-impinged. Confusion clouds the waters, muddies that which is and that which could be. It’s important that you know this now, before you start to get any bright ideas haha, because the truth is that it can’t. Be, that is.

Without the detritus of the life you cast yourself upon there is simply no need. The necessity for your illumination comes with a qualifier, and it is everything aside from you. See the photo, strangled behind warped glass? See the plastic cup of milk, the lavender handkerchief it kisses and the spot on the couch where the cigarette fell between bare thighs? See the bird? That is the family bird. It is the color of bone marrow and it is loved. It must be seen, too.

You are the silent sentinel.
Function and form, at least theoretically. You specifically have not gotten any younger.
More than anything you are provider of choice. Choice. The moment they are not yet ready for the dark—That is your time. You are never to cry (you can’t) but if you have to (it’s not possible), don’t.

You will be positioned inconveniently. Behind a couch, at an oblique angle, half hidden behind the perennially desiccated ficus. You will be installed beneath a draft or by the bedside table of lovers gone sour. As they fuck, tangled in the stained periwinkle quilt she sewed over long nights in a desperate bid for wholeness you will mourn the loss of something vital and unspoken and you will not look away. You can’t look away, but more importantly, don’t turn from them. Never turn from them. After he wilts he will fix his eyes on the oil painting of a little boy, a little boy in a little house with a large dog and he will howl in the space that you yourself brighten. Isn’t that special? Isn’t that wonderful, how needed you are in this moment and all moments to come?

3.
It came on in the night
Some dark summoning
Probably a test
I’ve heard of these things
Happening somewhere else but
Never here.

The next morning, foggy, slide tomatoes and sea salt down my ripe gullet whole.
Gird yourself for the battle
Fall for your queen so that we might rise
Whorled pads against chilled glass
I begin to unscrew, one turn, two
Turn and turn and turn
Days pass and I look around.
Joints ache
There is dust at the corners of my eyes, tiny drifts like
Fallen snow.
Faded curtains hang open
I hope no one has seen me at work.

A Letter To The President

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Dear José Antonio Bowen,
I am a fifth grader from the Park School of Baltimore, and I am writing to you about an issue we have been talking about in class: gun violence and school shootings. The recent march in Washington spread the word about the problem of guns in schools, and now it is time to take action and make a change.
We were thinking about what we could do as fifth graders to support this cause. I believe that if more young adults were informed about the importance of voting, perhaps they could help reform gun laws and protect future children from gun violence. For this reason I am writing to Maryland colleges to encourage their students to vote.
Do you know that only 21% of young adults between the ages of 18 and 24 vote? Young people should be excited to vote because they have just gotten the power to make their voices heard, and they can use that power to address the problems in their communities. Young people need not be copies of their parents and subject to the influence of others. Instead, they should exercise their right to vote in order to make positive changes in society. I would like to encourage college students to vote by making posters and putting them up at your school.

Sincerely,
Juliet Sims

[Provided by the Office of the President]

Why I’ve Become More Conservative Since Leaving Goucher – An Alum’s Perspective

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Nobody asked out loud how best to save the world. We didn’t have to.
I was sitting in class in Van Meter in 2011 or 2012 when a discussion on socioeconomic decline in Baltimore took a philosophical turn. At a surface level, we talked about things like how to become locally involved. On another level, we talked about something much bigger. Baltimore’s socioeconomics was a prompt just abstract enough, just far enough from our own experiences, that the best answer seemed to be to reflect on our own personal philosophical templates for how best to achieve change.
Four years after graduating from Goucher, I sometimes think back to that discussion and what it revealed about how Goucher students view the world and how to fix it – and how, in turn, Goucher shows the world to its students.
“Start a civic organization,” “build a new social network,” “galvanize people with social media campaigns,” were some of the ideas proposed. While there was no shortage of variety, they all had one thing in common, which was that change required the creation of something new; it was necessarily a challenge to established norms. Better to work for an NGO critical of the World Bank rather than for the World Bank. Better to work for a nonprofit rather than the private sector. Let’s describe it as an outside-the-system mentality of changemaking.
Only one student proposed anything else to help Baltimore, and it indeed seemed an especially dull idea. “There are already plenty of great causes and organizations in Baltimore,” they said. Why not join one?
That turns out to be important.
“Change” is an abstract notion. But insofar as the attitude one takes toward it will inform the thousands of important decisions one will make throughout life about career or lifestyle, it has real consequences. Liberal arts students should recognize that adopting an outside-the-system change maker’s mindset – and surrounding themselves with people who share that mindset – potentially distorts awareness of what is actually achievable, paving the way to disillusionment and disappointment. A wiser mindset is one which recognizes that worthwhile change usually comes from demonstrating success within recognized roles or organizations. That, in turn, gives you authority and power—recall that one of reasons Barack Obama gave for attending law school after his years as a community organizer in Chicago (a little-recognized role if there ever was one) was to acquire power.
In my case, the belief that I could succeed outside of recognizable roles or institutions caused me to make impractical choices. My first two years out of college I spent determined to find ways to become a short story writer or novelist — jobs which don’t exist. Goucher can hardly be blamed for foisting that ambition on me, but it did give it room and oxygen to breathe and take on life of its own.
More immediately, I decided that I would go overseas to teach English, first in Beijing and then Hong Kong. I had a great time, and I don’t regret it. But I can now acknowledge that it likely set back progress on career advancement as a journalist, in part by postponing a reckoning with what I wanted for a career. No professor ever directly encouraged this off-the-beaten-road journey of mine. But I can only observe that I departed Goucher as thoroughly committed to that journey as ever.
Why was it, that day in the classroom in Van Meter, that so many students, myself included, immediately conceived of change as something that came from the outside, rather than from within?
One reason may be the homogeneity of political and social beliefs at schools like Goucher. This can make it easy to imagine that alternative perspectives are one-dimensional, lacking in complexity and merit. From that starting point, it is natural to imagine that one already possesses the only quality one needs in order to create something different: willpower. But that is short-sighted. Willpower uncoupled to a recognizable organization or career path or institution will earn you only frustration. Experience outside college quickly shows that not only are practical barriers more taxing to political or social ideals than one anticipates – you’ll find ways to rationalize the compromising of any number of beliefs in order to have a stable paycheck – but also that the establishment institutions or organizations that are all too easy to vilify from campus are in reality constrained by any number of practical realities. In theory, students appreciate those practical realities. In practice, they take some time to hit home.
A smarter attitude to changemaking begins with recognizing the limits to how much change you can achieve. This is a notion intimately tied to the recognition that good solutions already exist. This may sound abstract, but it successfully diagnoses problems in any number of social arenas. In politics, there is no substitute for voting and civic engagement. In journalism, there is no magic antidote to declining readership in an era of instantaneous information, only quality journalism. And so on.
From this follows the recognition that change is most effectively delivered by accruing power within existing institutions and organizations. Achieving success this way demonstrates credibility, and allows people in positions of power to trust you by giving you some of their power. And being in power puts you in a far stronger position to bring change than being out of power.
Let’s assume the two assumptions here are correct: that change is best achieved by individuals who leverage power accrued within established institutions (not from outside them), and that liberal arts colleges like Goucher tend to foster the perspective that change happens from the outside in. Then these schools risk engineering a massive transfer of talent and collective conscience into marginalized roles, while at the same time leaving the world’s institutions to be run by less socially conscious individuals. NGOs will always be a critical part of the world’s democratic systems. But they will never be in the driver’s seat.
We should not allow the world’s institutions to be left to individuals who may lack strong social awareness or even the desire for change. Little by little, the students at schools like Goucher will save the world. But they will be more effective at it by recognizing that the savviest attitude to change is often one that recognizes rather than minimizes limits.

SCOTT CARPENTER ’14

Open Letter to the Goucher Community

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To the Goucher Community,
Following the Goucher Identity Survey Follow-Up discussion, our class made plans for how to best deliver the thoughts of the student body to the administration, faculty, and remaining students that were not in attendance, in hopes of unifying the community around a conversation of our shared stake in Goucher’s identity, budget and future direction. We conducted a survey which received a response of 255 responses. We advertised for the dialogue through tabling that allowed us to collect direct suggestions for the Board of Trustees and President Jose Bowen. Approximately 60-70 students (in addition to invited faculty and administration) attended the session on Wednesday, May 9th from 1:30-3:30 pm. After hearing the students elaborate on some of the responses or percentages represented in the data, we opened up the floor for the community to share its thoughts and feelings.

It seems that students feel that they come into Goucher excited and have fun engaging with the community. Many students love the community, and demonstrate their care through addressing the school’s structural problems. Students have felt demeaned and impeded when attempting to implement these changes. Students expressed hope that this could change. “Goucher can be an experimental and interdisciplinary place that integrates student power through supporting their studies,” said one student.

Some resonating comments highlighted that we are a communal environment, that relies on a close, personal network of friends and professionals. Students are grateful for the support we receive from faculty, though this is dependent on the professors that are here. Without them, students can feel overwhelmed, juggling their academic responsibilities amidst their administrative concerns on our campus. It’s not sustainable for students to lead and market student-run programs without the school providing further support for said students in other areas of their lives. These student-run initiatives are then co-opted by administration for marketing purposes. This ignorance of students’ grievances with structural limitations of certain departments leaves students dissatisfied, and seeking other schools that may address their needs. These students feel disconnected from the Goucher community.“We’re breaking eggs for an omelette that students didn’t ask for, and current students are the eggs,” said one student.

Students expressed feeling panicked with Goucher’s lack of a unified vision. A campus that totes a liberal identity but ignores the needs of marginalized voices poses a challenge to students seeking to engage in true community. Despite Goucher’s shortcomings, Goucher students also seem hopeful that Goucher could truly be a place that engages students from different backgrounds in critical conversations about identity. However, as a student body, we need to be receptive of different views to adapt to a changing community and political climate, and we must be also able to have these conversations in a way that does not depend on students of color to provide the education for those with privilege.

Students value their Goucher experience because of the diversity in thought, and the freedom to think and explore on this campus. Some students appreciated study abroad as the opportunity to connect to communities globally, and that allowed students to experience something outside of their comfort zone. When engaging with outside communities, students want to see Goucher fully embody its social justice identity as demonstrated through its actions and dedication to institutional change. Students wish to see our administration acting proactively in response to issues on our campus and/or political issues that impact members of our community. Students inquired about the history of Goucher’s land as a slave plantation/”farm”, asking that Goucher College maintain honesty with students about our school’s history and intentions for the future. Students also suggested Goucher interview current students about their Goucher experience in addition to conducting exit interviews.

There is an underlying issue of mental health that plagues most students as they continue to have their needs go unmet. Most students are left to figure out how to navigate the system on their own causing much stress and burden for a college student learning how to navigate the world. The services on our campus need to provide more stable options for counseling, as well as more consistent access to advanced treatment. In addition, these mental health challenges prevent leaders from engaging in the community as they must recover themselves. This heavily impacts the campus as we rely heavily on student-run initiatives. If students are not empowered to succeed in their academic and social experiences, our campus climate will decline as more students experience depression and struggle to maintain positivity.

Research into the budget allocation reveals financial information which students value understanding, as students also have an interest in Goucher’s economic stability. Students wish to be seen as equal and valued collaborators in the administration of our campus. What students seek is POWER not support.
Issues that students mentioned needed resolution or sought further conversation on, were:

  • Academics
  • Student Life
  • Social Apathy
  • Mental Health
  • Athletics Department
  • Accuracy of Marketing
  • Structural Limitations in Implementing Institutional Change
  • Goucher’s Identity Crisis
  • Goucher’s Transitional Period
  • Administration’s Focus on the First-Year Class
  • The Goucher Bubble
  • Study Abroad
  • Faculty of Color
  • Financial Restraints/ Economic Advisor for First-Generation Students

This reflection captures some of the perceptions expressed at our Identity Survey discussion. However, it lacks full student input and struggles to weave together opposing views into a unified voice. There are still more questions to consider. What kind of students do we want to attract to Goucher? What does Goucher embody and what does that mean? Are we losing the essence of our identity? How can we make the ideals of study abroad be what we do within the college?

The survey, discussion, and efforts of this PCE 220 class were merely conducted in hopes of sparking more conversations about our respective stake in Goucher’s future. Where do you stand? Where do you agree or disagree? We encourage you to engage in these conversations in the future with your peers or future organizers on this topic. Whatever your concern may be, don’t be afraid to jumpstart conversation and act on your beliefs. We cannot have any collective power until we have the courage to unify amongst ourselves.

LYDELL HILLS ON BEHALF OF PEACE STUDIES 220

Students Dive into Goucher’s Budget and Identity

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For the past semester the Peace Studies 220 (PCE 220) class has been learning about different historical and current approaches and methods of social movements and activism. For the fieldwork component of this class students needed to choose an issue or organization at or near Goucher to immerse themselves in in order to apply what they have learned to the real world. They identified important issues in the Goucher community and chose to immerse themselves and address these issues.

PCE 220 students want to “bridge the disconnect,” as one student put it, between Goucher’s administration and current student body. While they avoided talking on behalf of other students, many students in PCE 220 said that they sense general discontent in the student body currently. They said that some of this may be due to the fact that Goucher markets itself in an accurate way. They also want to address information gap about Goucher’s budget, and provide students with their research on how it works. They are also trying to learn about the decision making process at Goucher and our Board of Trustees. Students pointed out that before this project many of them did not have any knowledge about these issues but that as they looked into them more they became more curious and began to care more.

Through researching Goucher’s tax forms (9-90 forms) the students gathered information about the budget and by creating and releasing a student survey (which went live April 25) they hope to gather data about students’ opinions about Goucher’s identity and whether we are actually the school we are marketed as. After they analyze data from their survey the students of PCE 220 plan on having two open dialogues to discuss their findings with the wider Goucher community.

Several students in the class emphasized that they are not trying to incite anger in the student body or criticize the administration. Their main objective is to share information and create conversation. They feel that sharing this information will benefit students by allowing us to have an informed opinion of how our school is run. Many students in the class said that they think that the administration will benefit from their work as well, especially from the data they will gather from the student survey about Goucher’s identity.

PCE 220 has been very thorough in their research. They read from Nathan D. Grawe’s book Demographics and the Demand for Higher Education which examines the issues of liberal arts colleges financial sustainability on a national scale. With the guidance of a former Goucher finance employee they studied Goucher’s 9-90 tax forms of the 2012 through 2016 fiscal years. They sought out the help of statisticians when crafting their student survey. In the week after my interview with them they had made plans to  speak with a Goucher staff member about Goucher’s retention rate and exit data. They were also planning on speaking with someone who sits on Goucher’s Board of Trustees to talk about the decision making process at Goucher.

When asked about Goucher’s transparency, the students of PCE 200 had different opinions. The students agreed that the staff and faculty they reached out to were very responsive and helpful. One student said, “Goucher does do a phenomenal job as far as producing their tax forms to the general public.” Another student said, “Legally we [Goucher] have to share that information [tax forms]” and pointed out that while Goucher’s tax forms are available their contents are not accessible to most people who do not know how to decipher them. Another student said, “Goucher could be a lot more transparent but students have not demanded this.”

The students of PCE 220 are shedding a light on the budget which is a topic that is not in the forefront of most student’s concerns and is not an issue students have time to look into for themselves. The student survey will also reveal data about current student opinions and perceptions.

Below is a summary of Goucher’s budget made by the PCE 220 students.

Goucher Budget 101

Goucher College has two types of budgets (an amount of money that goes toward paying for specific types of expenses)

The Capital Budget is money that goes toward paying for fixed assets (resources that will last more than 5 years such as buildings and vehicles)

Capital Budget Sources of Revenue (Where the money comes from):

Debt (like a mortgage), Donations/Campaigns (like the Undaunted Campaign)

The Operating Budget is money that goes toward paying for everything else (such as salaries, materials, uniforms, debt repayment, and other ongoing expenses)

Operating Budget Sources of Revenue: Tuition, Housing/Dining

Expenses, Endowment (invested money that has been donated), and Grants.

*73% of the operating budget comes from tuition and room and board expenses.

Source: a presentation to our class on Goucher’s finances by a former Goucher finance employee.

Cecile Adrian

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