In a few short weeks, I will finally walk across the stage set up on Guilford’s oaken quad and receive my diploma. Much more than its being just a piece of parchment, I would like to believe it signifies how Guilford has changed my life.
I hope that the College will continue to change others’ lives too. I will now impart some advice, even if it has not been asked, in hopes that others will listen.
Administrators: Be easy on The Guilfordian. Remember, this is an institution of learning, even for budding journalists. Don’t refuse to be involved in articles because you disagree that you might be doing a less than stellar job.
Remember, we students take it on the chin when we perform less than excellently. You are not immune the same criticism.
By the same token, I know that you each love Guilford individually. Let’s be team players in the years to come, and this includes being thankful to the student journalists who will come to our institution.
Trustees: Yes, you, our governing board. Please continue to interact with students. I cannot tell you how much it meant to my personal growth and professional development to be involved with your body.
You all are highly successful in the community, and fielding questions from a student journalist the past few years I’m sure was not your top priority. Yet, many of you made time, individually, to speak to me whenever the story called for it.
I really do hope that you will continue to reach out to students of all shapes and sizes. It is the kind of thing that will continue to set our school apart.
Faculty: In the coming years, please be painfully open with the new administration, even at the cost of some hurt feelings. You all are the very backbone of our institution, yet you are underpaid. Being open about the changes crucial to the College’s continuing success should be shared with our next president. She may not be able to wave a magic wand, but I get the sense she will receive all ideas and give agency to voices that have long been drowned out by a quantitative-based administration.
Also, thank you for the change you brought into my life. Doubtless you have changed many others who came before me. You should be proud of yourselves. Your students love you.
Staff: Please be vocal with the new administration about your grievances. If those who can change the environment you work in don’t know what your concerns are, they won’t address them.
Becoming a cohesive, constructive college with differing thoughts and ideas would go a long way to boost morale. Understanding each other and respecting various opinions would strengthen our fabric.
Higher education faces some challenges in the future. We have experienced some over the past few years as we have seen enrollment decrease and positions be cut here at the College.
Creative, principled thinking is what this institution needs from the top down. I would like to have faith that all who line the halls and fill the walks of this historic place of learning will rise to the occasion.