Saturday, April 10, 2010

Not Ready To Grow Up

Senioritis' post, "GW Students, Act Like Adults," poses some interesting criticism to the goals of the "I Want To Know" campaign. Senioritis' argument claims that GW students are the problems with the issues being brought forth for activism projects, not the University.
"One recent post complains that students have trouble finding out when speakers are, but a little work on the part of an individual student would direct them to the calendar of university events from MyGW which lists speakers coming to campus, and where they will be. Students can set custom alerts at GW News/Events...There is no excuse for saying you missed a speaker, or an event when things are easy to find," writes Senioritis."
To begin my rebuttal, the post was not a complaint. It merely represents an issue that I, along with other students at the University have witnessed over the past four years at GW. However, as this campaign has started, I have found other ways to be notified of speakers as Senioritis has mentioned. Before checking out the "I Want To Know" campaign, I am curious if Senioritis had used the calendar and custom alert system, and if Senioritis knows many other who have.

I acknowledge the existence of University's calendar, but students are still notified by their respective schools when a school is hosting a prominent speaker. Do other students have to check the calendar every day and go through the "1000+ departments and offices on campus," and visit their sites, or other department sites to know what's going on? What if the student doesn't know at the time if he or she "think(s) there might be something and it is important to" him or her? Students are busy: they have many other concerns, and searching through a large database for special events, might not be on the top of the to-do list.

I am willing to admit: student are also lazy. While this may not be a good excuse, it is a valid one. They prefer their assignments handed to them, not posted on blackboard without notice. They want e-mails with reminders, to prevent "I didn't know" situations. They want to hang out with friends, participate in activities, and be told what to do. Many may not be willing to admit this, but as a graduating senior I have come to realize that as students, we want to be told what to do and when to do it or how we can do it. Once students hit the real world there is no one to constantly direct them, but for now they're still allowed to be "advised."

A list-serv provided by each school would allow students to know when and how they can hear a speaker, easily. The list-serv would not send just "another useless infomail," but would be an optional sign-up. Besides the creation of this list-serv, the goal is for an e-mail to be sent by the University to all students at the beginning to sign-up for notifications by school sponsored speakers. This e-mail could also tell students to look for other events held on campus through the University's calendar.

Thank you Senioritis for bringing the calendar and alert system to my attention. I will incorporate it in to my strategy, on how announcements should be told to ALL of GW. Students want to know about interesting people on campus, but unfortunately they don't want to do the work to find them, and worse, find out about them when it's too late.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

No. It's called advertising. Why do you think all organizations and companies everywhere in the US advertise? It gets the word out.

A small section in the Hatchet detailing activities and speakers in the coming week is not hard to do.

It's not for me to research every possible event that GW may have, but rather it's GW's obligation to promote such events.

It's not the students who need to grow up, but GW in general.

On a side note, GW is so hit and miss with E-Mails. This university, as much as I love it, is so disorganized when it comes to informing the student body. It's really poor.