Rugby, OSL, CC reach agreement on spring break goal post repair costs

Last Wednesday, Director of the Office of Student Life (OSL) Doug Schiazza and Associate Director of OSL Mike Bodnarik reached an agreement with College Council (CC) for OSL to pay the repair costs of rugby’s goal post after OSL approved the repair costs in advance of CC’s approval. 

According to OSL, the goal post was damaged by a windstorm, and repairs were immediately approved over spring break “to help ensure the repairs were done in time for rugby to have their season.” Schiazza cited the precedent set by a previous damaged goal post in the summer of 2018, during which Facilities fixed the post prior to CC’s approval and OSL’s knowledge. “We approved the immediate repairs [this spring] based on what CC had just done in the previous (and nearly identical) situation,” he said.

Trustees approve OIDE budget increase

The Board of Trustees has approved a request to add $34,000 to next year’s Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity (OIDE) budget to be allocated to the Minority Coalition (MinCo), according to Vice President for Finance and Administration Fred Puddester. This funding request had been a part of the demands published in an open letter to the Board of Trustees by the Coalition Against Racist Education Now (CARE Now) on April 12. 

This letter asked the Board of Trustees to “approve the request for $34,000 additional funding to the Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity in full for the purpose of supporting student-led Heritage Month events, as well as the increase of $15,000 additional funding for incoming Minority Coalition groups.”

Tyler Tsay ’19, MinCo co-chair, said he supported the Board’s decision to grant the funding but emphasized his hope for continued increases in OIDE’s budget.

Davis Center grapples with insufficient funding, staffing

Currently, the Davis Center is operating with two full-time staff members, with plans to onboard new members. BROOKE HOROWITCH/EXECUTIVE EDITOR

On April 17, the Coalition Against Racist Education Now (CARE Now), published a list of demands to College President Maud Mandel.

CC votes to reject WIFI

Last night, College Council (CC) voted 13–8 with one abstention to reject a request from the Williams Initiative for Israel (WIFI) to become a registered student organization. The vote came a week after the club’s request was tabled at a previous CC meeting, and the meeting involved nearly two hours of protracted and heated debate among both CC members and a large number of guests attending.

Stop & Shop workers reach tentative agreement, end strike

Stop & Shop workers across New England returned to work on Monday for the first time in 11 days, ending the strike that began on April 11. According to Skyhook, a location technology company, visits to Stop & Shop locations across the area declined by between 50–70 percent during the strike. 

The strike was organized by five United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) local unions that represent over 31,000 workers, including members of UFCW Local 1459, which includes the Berkshires.

Poster disappearances spark discussion

The disappearance of posters last week, including materials for student activism and for an anti-gun violence event organized by Joy James, the Francis Christopher Oakley third century professor of humanities, sparked conversations about campus climate toward materials advocating for civil and human rights. In a campus-wide email, “Creating a healthier campus culture,” sent on Monday, President of the College Maud Mandel called for the campus community to “treat each other with respect when differences inevitably emerge.”  

“Love and Justice,” which was financially supported by the political science and Africana studies departments, Converging Worlds and the Feminist Collective, featured Dorothy Holmes and Shapearl Wells, two Chicago-based Black activist mothers who had lost their children to gun violence.

CARE Now sends open letter to President Mandel

Following its letter to the Board of Trustees on April 12, the Coalition Against Racist Education (CARE Now) released an expanded petition to President of the College Maud Mandel last Wednesday, stating its demands to make the College a more inclusive space for minoritized groups. CARE Now has called for Mandel to respond to the demands by Friday at 5 p.m.

The new list of demands expands upon the 12 objectives that were requested of the Board of Trustees that call for institutional progress, and includes sections recommending more hiring of faculty of color, enhanced Minority Studies programs, increased funding to the Office of Institutional Diversity, investigations of Campus Safety and Security (CSS), expansions of Title IX administration and increased pay for Dining and Facilities. 

Mandel responded to this request in an email to CARE Now, and will meet and discuss the demands along with several other deans and administrators today.

RASAN shapes first portion of Take Back the Night into protest

RASAN has changed the initial segment of its Take Back the Night event into a protest that supports sexual assault survivors and confronts rape culture, followed by an open mic session. SABRINE BRISMEUR/PHOTO EDITOR

Last Thursday, the Rape and Sexual Assault Network (RASAN) held its annual Take Back the Night event, “an international evening of solidarity and support for survivors of sexual assault and their supporters/allies,” according to RASAN’s email publicizing the event.

Spring Street Blues

Monday 4-15-19

11:52 a.m. Williams Hall: College staff member asked that an officer meet him on the fourth floor of Williams Hall concerning damage. A ceiling EXIT sign was ripped from the ceiling (exposing the wires) and is now missing.  When the sign was ripped down it also caused damage to the ceiling.  The bathroom in this hallway also had large amounts of dried vomit on the floor as well as in the sink and toilet.