Issuu on Google+

The Times-Delphic Thursday October 11, 2012 Campus Election Schwartz scoops up Student Senate seat Olivia O’Hea Staff Writer After weeks of campaigning, meetings and a run-off election, the winner of the First-Year Senator election was announced at 12:15 a.m. on Oct. 9. Groups gathered around Pomerantz Stage at 11:45 p.m. the night before, and an anxious buzz filled the room when the candidates, Mollie Wheeler and Cole Schwartz entered. The tension in the room increased as the clock reached 12 a.m. The Election Commission arrived on stage at 12:15 a.m. and announced that over a third of the first-year class voted, declaring Schwartz the winner with 65 percent of the vote. Despite the continuous chanting of “Speech! Speech!” from his supporters, Schwartz thanked the crowd quickly and congratulated Wheeler on a great race before reporting to David Karaz, Student Senate Vice President and temporary head of the First-Year Interest Committee. “I was pretty nervous (before the announcement),” Wheeler said. “I woke up really confident this morning, but as the day went on I got more anxious.” Wheeler said she didn’t feel “great” about the outcome of the election. “I would’ve started sooner — gotten more posters out and started campaigning earlier,” Wheeler said concerning changes she would make to her campaign. Despite the loss, Wheeler still plans on being an active member of the Student Senate committee on community outreach. Schwartz said he entered Olmsted feeling, “nervous, Campus News but excited to find out the results.” He said his nerves hit about five minutes before the announcement but he had, “…good faith that his friends had helped him get the word out as much as possible during the day.” Schwartz plans on tackling his campaign goals right away, focusing first on the possibility of adding printers to residence halls, then on a first-year community service project and finally on initiating programs for professional outreach in the Des Moines area. Following the announcement, the crowd continued to congratulate Schwartz. Schwartz’s roommate, Tom Fischer, created a parody Twitter account, @SenatorSchwartz, following the announcement. He tweeted, “I would like to thank all 299 voters. Thank you for allowing me this position, I will not do you wrong. Also I’ll provide some laughs.” The campaign had been a long process for the two candidates, with the run-off election ending in a writein ballot at the last minute. With the election finally over, the First-Year Interest Committee, guided by the newly elected senator, can begin working on their plans for the class of 2016. Lauren Horsch | editor-in-chief A FRIEND CONGRATULATES COLE SCHWARTZ (top left) after he is named First-Year Senator. CHAIR OF THE ELECTION COMMISSION MATT VAN HOECK (top right) announces the results. THE CROWD(bottom) eagerly awaits the First-Year Senator announcement. Plus/Minus grading concerns at forefront for students Emma Wilson Staff Writer Drake University’s Faculty Senate is proposing a change to a plus/minus grading system. The topic has come up several times at Drake, but in the spring of 2012, the faculty began a serious investigation into the subject. Bruce Gilbert, director of library operations for Drake, was selected by the Faculty Senate Executive Committee to head this investigation. According to a survey conducted by the Faculty Senate, 42 percent of Drake’s faculty is strongly in favor of the change while only 13 percent strongly oppose it. One of the reasons motivating the change is that it suggested that plus/minus grading will reduce grade inflation. However, accord- ing to the “Implementation and Evaluation of Grade and Modifier Systems” by the Education Advisory Board, grade modifiers do not reduce grade inflation once in effect. The 2011-2012 Student Body President, Greg Larson, wrote a letter to the Faculty Senate in which he suggested a plus/minus grading system would be “harmful” to the general student body. Junior Emily Gadient agrees with Larson. “People with higher GPAs would be affected negatively rather than positively,” Gadient said. She added it would hurt those doing well in school and reward those doing poorly. Larson and Gadient also agree that while plus/minus grading could possibly reduce grade inflation, grade inflation is not a pressing issue at Drake. Check it out>>> Thursday > Women’s Soccer vs. Creighton > 7 p.m. > Omaha One of the surveyed schools in the “Implemen- “(The proposed grading system) would deter academic risk-taking for students who want to stay on the safe side.” —Stephen Slade, Academic Affairs Committee Chair tation and Evaluation of Grade and Modifier Systems” suggests that a plus/ minus grading system might motivate students to work harder for higher grades, because there would be smaller intervals for them to work toward. First-year Logan White agrees with this because he’d “rather take ‘A-minus’ than a ‘B.’“ “The further down the grading scale you go, the better it looks,” White said. “If a student really wants an ‘Aplus,’ they will put forward the extra five percent.” First-year AnaEliza Chelf, questions the need to fix a system that seems to be working. Junior Arthur Wright agrees with this, saying that the change is simply “unnecessary.” Wright said college students should be able to look at the percentages themselves and don’t have a need for more specific grading levels. The Academic Affairs Committee Chair Stephen Slade, opposes the change for several reasons. Most importantly, the majority of students also oppose the change. Slade feels that it brings up concerns regarding the way extracurricular activities will be affected if more emphasis is placed on grades. He says he fears, “ ... it would deter academic risk-taking for students who want to stay on the safe side,” in more creatively focused majors. “This could have huge impacts on students applying to graduate or professional programs with highly competitive GPA requirements,” Slade said Senior Bryn Goldberg also opposes the change, even though it won’t affect her, she thinks, “A ‘B’ looks a lot better than a ‘B-minus.’” Friday Saturday > Civic Music Association Concert > 7 p.m. > Sheslow > Men’s Soccer > Fall Break vs. Illinois > NO CLASS > 7 p.m. > Cownie Soccer Complex THE TIMES-DELPHIC |TIMESDELPHIC.COM THE STUDENT NEWSPAPER FOR DRAKE UNIVERSITY SINCE 1884 First-year Henry Carlson agrees with this thought and feels the current system “benefits students more.” Many students including first-year Michaela Oleson also concur. “It allows for error and gives you a little extra room to show your potential,” Oleson said. Student Senate has been talking to students during their outreach hours and has come to the general conclusion that the student body is against the change. Student Senate held a town hall-style forum on Oct. 10, from 5-6 p.m. in the Cowles Library fishbowl to discuss the issue and bring together the opinions of faculty and students. An article concerning the town hall meeting will be in the next edition of the TD. Monday & Tuesday <<<Campus Calendar TWITTER @TIMESDELPHIC FACEBOOK Drake University, Des Moines THE TIMES-DELPHIC Vol. 132 | No. 12 | Oct. 11, 2012

The Times-Delphic

Related publications