In light of the New Year, we at the Wheel have comprised a list of internal and external wishes and resolutions for both our editorial board and the greater Emory community.
We would first like to address a legitimate concern we have heard about our own publication: the inability to express all minority voices through our editorial board and the idea that the Wheel is a racialized white space. We cannot claim to speak for the voices of those who are not involved in our publication, but we will continue to find ways to make our paper accessible to all voices who want to be heard.
While our editorial board does contain great diversity of race, ethnicity and thought, we wholeheartedly acknowledge that we lack certain perspectives on our own editorial board.
We strive to acquire new perspectives by trying to create an atmosphere in which viewpoints that deviate from popular thought are not shut out merely for being unpopular. We know we are not completely representative of the entire Emory community, and most importantly, we encourage feedback from our community to ensure that we’re encompassing different voices. Please email us for any comments, concerns or story ideas.
Additionally, we wish for the Emory community to continue engaging in different types of events and to continue fostering discussions over race and identity that began last semester. These conversations are often difficult to have, but they are important for creating meaningful awareness and change.
In the new year, we also wish to increase our readership and reach through revamping our digital platforms and engagement on social media. We hope to report in a more creative manner and on overlooked stories and angles. We again encourage members of the community to provide us with feedback on our newspaper as we strive to make the Wheel better and as accessible as possible.
Fondly known as “syllabus week,” the start of the semester is time of revelry as students reunite on campus after winter break. As the culminating weekend of syllabus week approaches, we hope that everybody attends parties safely, drinks responsibly and we wish for continued safety throughout the year.
In the past year, our community has taken steps to understand and combat the risk of sexual assault on campus, especially in social situations involving alcohol and, often, in fraternity houses. As we continue to work together to solve this problem, we wish for continued cooperation on all fronts, including continued and improved transparency by the administration with respect to the sexual misconduct process.
In the coming year, we wish for the success of those programs already established to improve sexual assault prevention, such as the new Sexual Violence Prevention Advisory Board. Additionally, we wish for increased implementation of more proactive measures for prevention on campus, including bystander intervention implemented in more social clubs. Despite our critiques, we encourage the Emory community to support to the administration and to continue working alongside them.
We wish for the Interfraternity Council (IFC) to continue the fruitful conversation initiated at the end of last semester surrounding fraternity social life. With the installation of the new IFC executive board, we wish for a continuation of the momentum from last semester, which included decisions such as the social freeze and the subsequent action plan.
In 2015, it’s time to continue awareness of the complex issues on our campus and move to action. For the community to progress and grow, we hope that the steps outlined in the IFC plan can be turned into actionable items.
The Student Programming Council (SPC) has put on some exciting Dooley’s Weeks over the years. However, the annual event has recently plateaued. The same schedule and similar performers have slightly diminished some of the excitement around Dooley’s Week. For example, the schedule has consistently included a comedian performing on Thursday, a rapper on Friday and DJ on Saturday.
In the coming semester, we hope that SPC will challenge the status quo and work to be more creative in their plans for Dooley’s Week.
The Liberal Arts
Emory struggles to cultivate an atmosphere hospitable to the liberal arts. Many Emory students attend this university for pre-professional purposes but still have the option of engaging with the arts and humanities through classes, extracurricular activities and student organizations.
However, increasing tuition rates jeopardize the liberal arts, whose value, professional and otherwise, may be less apparent to students saddled with loans. We wish to see more effort put into fostering the liberal arts across the student body and emphasizing the holistic benefits of the arts and humanities. Initiatives like the Undergraduate Fellowship in Life and Learning, which aims to integrate students’ learning experiences, are a step in the right direction.
While we are encouraged by the University’s continuing commitment to ethical engagement, we wish for continued and increased transparency from the University. From issues surrounding admission barriers to undocumented students to more specific information on how Emory handles conduct issues, the University should strive to provide more transparency in all different facets of its administration. We believe studying the liberal arts involves asking questions about everything from existence to policy, and the University should try to make answers more accessible.
Happy New Year!
The above staff editorial represents the majority opinion of the Wheel’s editorial board.