Drake Women’s Basketball had its second consecutive 20-win season in 2015-16 and is primed to improve on that next year. Read more on page 12.
PHOTO BY MOHAMAD SUHAIMI |STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
THE TIMES-DELPHIC The weekly student newspaper of Drake University
Vol. 135 | No. 20 | Wed. March 30, 2016 timesdelphic.com
As STEM construction continues, a student weighs in on the noise that hinders her concentration in the classroom. She finds it nearly impossible to concentrate, an issue many students are encountering. Find out more about what she thinks on the construction on page 6.
The Students Activities Board hosted “Glee” star Lauren Potter in collaboration with the Best Buddies organization. Potter spoke on Pomernatz stage about how she overcame her disability to achieve her dream of become an actress in Hollywood. Read more on page 7.
Women’s tennis took a hit as its no. 1 player, senior Mariel Ante, suffered an injury on Saturday. Despite their loss, the Bulldogs pulled off two wins and started conference play 1-0. Read more on page 10.
Senate committee cuts funds to agree with budget Beth LeValley Staff Writer email@example.com @bethlevalley
Plus/minus grading scale to be implemented next fall Jessie Spangler Assistant Relays Editor firstname.lastname@example.org @jessiespangler3
Drake will be changing its grading policy starting in the fall 2016 semester, meaning that professors will have the option to incorporate pluses and minuses into their students’ grades. The new grading policy will only affect fall 2016 classes and beyond. Any grades a student has received in the past will not be affected by the changes in grading. Transfer credits will also not be affected by the new grading policy. “The Faculty Senate in December 2012 passed a motion to bring to all faculty of nonLaw instruction, a vote or poll concerning a grading policy change from whole grades to the inclusion of the choice for plus or minus grades,” said Nancy Geiger, a student information analyst who also serves as the Faculty Senate secretary. The changes in grading will affect undergraduate, graduate and professional pharmacy students. Law students will continue to follow their own grading scheme. The issue of changing the grading system was brought up
several times before that. “That poll was taken in March 2013, Faculty Senate voted to approved the grading change (non-Law) to be implemented beginning with the fall 2016 courses,” Geiger said. Professors will not be required to use pluses and minuses in their grading. According to Drake’s website, instructors control what scale their students will be graded on, and some situations may not allow for pluses and minuses as part of students’ grades. “The plus and minus grades are options for faculty of instruction to use or not. I do not believe in any way ‘to hurt students’ was or is a reason the new grading possibilities were approved,” Geiger said when asked if the new grading policy would hurt or help students. The changes in grading will not apply to students who received an “incomplete” in a course prior to fall 2016 and complete it the next semester or afterwards. Some students like the changes in grading. “I think that the new changes are good because they are a better representation of your actual grade,” said Sara Schnuettgen, a first-year. “Someone that works super hard and gets an 89 percent in a class right now gets the same credit as someone who barely gets an 80 percent.”
Schnuettgen also believes that it will encourage students to work harder, because a B plus will mean more than a B. “I also hope that it makes the classes a bit more fair and equal on the grading criteria,” Schnuettgen said. “I just think that you deserve to get the grade you worked hard for.” Not all students are fans of the new grading policy. “For someone like me who kind of lives their life between 90 and 93 percent, it doesn’t really provide any benefits for staying over 90 percent. It’s actually kind of detrimental to my GPA,” said first-year Tanner Thurman. “There are some pluses. If I got somewhere between 87 and 89 percent then I’m getting more than three points for the class, so that’s where it can make up for it.” As a student who receives mostly A’s but can “count on one hand” how many A’s that are over 93 percent he’s received, Thurman is not excited for the new changes in grading. “I want to keep my GPA up, so if the new grading policy is going to force me into a corner to make sure that I’m not in the bottom range of an A, and to make sure that I’m getting great grades in class, then I’ll make myself work harder. In that light, I think it’ll be pretty effective. Do I prefer it? No,” Thurman said.
The new GPA scale A+ A AB+ B BC+ C CD+ D DF
4.0 4.0 3.7 3.3 3.0 2.7 2.3 2.0 1.7 1.3 1.0 1.0 0.0
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Drake Student Senate took to the library fishbowl Thursday night to discuss cutting funding for organizations on campus. The initial budget for annually funded organizations included $336,191.88 to be dispersed among 38 annually funded organizations for the 2016-2017 academic year. Student Senate will finalize this budget in two weeks. The Student Fees Allocation Committee (SFAC) cut $122,910.35 from the initial requested funds in order to align with its budget. This committee decides on these cuts based on the Student Senate bylaws. After cuts based on the bylaws are made, the committee decides what cuts would be most equitable and consistent across all organizations. This year, SFAC decided to remove all money allocated toward movie rights from organizations’ budgets because Free Movie Friday already has money toward movie rights in its budget. SFAC hopes that organizations will collaborate with Free Movie Friday rather than obtaining specific movie rights. Funding for organizations’ retreats and food for all general meetings were also cut from each organization. In general, one event from each organization was also cut to align with the budget. The largest budget in a student organization, which is consistent with past years, is the Student Activities Board. A total of $163,122 was budgeted to this organization. Only two organizations were approved for their entire requested budgets — Curling Club, which requested an $800 discounted rate to rent an ice rink, and PreMed Club, which will have three small events totaling $190.
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