Drew has seen many changes in the last year, some more disappointing than others. We have lost many of our most trusted staff members and seen major changes in departments that are important to us. While I completely understand that changes needed to be made to keep Drew’s doors open, some changes feel unnecessary and unfair towards the students. Additionally, the argument that all these changes are made with the students best interests in mind is becoming increasingly more difficult to believe. At some point, changing students’ favorite aspects of their school begins to harm the community as a whole.
PHOTO COURTESY OF DREW UNIVERSITY
Last year was frustrating enough for students. After seeing some of their favorite staff members get let go, students tried to understand the chaotic changes in multiple departments, for example, Title IX. Students must have been more than ready to have a fresh start with the new year—I know I was. Yet, when I arrived on campus, I was still met with more inconvenient changes. First, and most disappointing, I found out that the library was reducing their hours. How is taking away services from students meant to improve their experience here? I know I am not alone when I say that my best quality work has been produced in the Kean Room during the 24/7 study hours during finals week. Taking that away feels like a punch in the gut to the students, especially since this is a service that students greatly utilize and depend on. Not only the finals schedule has changed, but the library’s regular hours have been reduced, which will negatively impact the academic performance of those who cannot study in their rooms and residence halls late at night––whether it is because of their close proximity to their beds or simply because it is not an adequate space for them.
That is not the only radical change that we have seen so far, from Public Safety undergoing reconfiguration to Commons being open later than EC (what is up with that, anyway?), we are definitely attending a significantly different Drew University. Seeing forums such as the one being held for the Public Safety changes is encouraging, but there are still a lot of changes being made without consultation with students. Students want to see Drew thriving, but not if that means their favorite parts of their college experiences are being taken away.
Diana is an International Relations major with minors in Environmental Studies and Sustainability and Spanish.