The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

DAC-sponsored forum discusses College’s future

On Wednesday afternoon, as snow began falling outside, junior Ines Sanchez de Lozada asked a small group of students, faculty and staff, “What do you want Guilford to be?”

Feb. 12 marked the first of four community forums this semester, which intend to create a space that allows for open conversation about Guilford College’s core values, passions and priorities as well as strategies to unite the Guilford community.

Organized by a co-curricular subcommittee of the Diversity Action Committee, the forum was inspired by community involvement during the Administrative Program and Services Assessment forum and the community’s desire for more transparent dialogue between students, faculty, staff and administrators.

“I have been at Guilford for eight years … that’s the first time in my eight years that I’ve seen such a large segment of our community come out to anything,” said Jorge Zeballos, director of diversity training and development, of the APSA forum. “It was great to see that sense of investment.”

APSA discussions confirmed the necessity of a consistent open space for the community to voice concerns and collaboratively work towards finding solutions.

After brainstorming individually, sophomore Kiernan Colby kicked off the forum with an inquiry about the current presidential search.

“I want to know what we can do to promote transparency in the search for a new president,” said Colby.

That the presidential search may be closed to the public — including the student body — concerned many in attendance at the forum. Only the presidential search committee and two student representatives would have communication with candidates.

Junior Daniel Raeder spoke about the presidential search meeting he attended that addressed these issues.

“It could be a necessary evil,” Raeder said.

The best possible candidates are those who are more likely to seek out the position if it doesn’t mean compromising their current job.

Discussion transitioned as first-year Nahja Zigbi-Johnson brought up concerns about tours and the admission process.

“I’ve talked to some people who work in admissions and do tours, and they’ve voiced concerns about admission tours not properly representing the campus and the student body,” Zigbi-Johnson said. “That’s directly affecting who’s coming to Guilford, and it’s changing Guilford each year.”

Steve Moran, director of student leadership and engagement, provided his own advice.

“When I go to ask somebody for something I want to see changed, I find a way to frame it that helps what they’re trying to do too,” said Moran.

As the hour came to a close, students broke off into smaller groups. Snippets of conversations could be overheard of researching the presidential search and talking to Dean of Admission and Financial Aid Andrew Strickler, while others gasped at the large amount of snow that had quickly accumulated.

“It was really empowering to see so many people who are so genuinely interested in making Guilford a better place,” said first-year Elena Robles. “I think it went really well, and I think it’s important to have these discussions.”

This community forum set the tone for future open discussions amongst all community members who are passionate about creating a culture of transparency and openness at Guilford.

[photomosaic nggid=196]

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

The Guilfordian intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Comments are reviewed and must be approved by a moderator to ensure that they meet these standards. The Guilfordian does not allow anonymous comments, and requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All The Guilfordian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *