The realization that you're pretty close to becoming an alumnus/swarming some poor dude

The realization that you’re pretty close to becoming an alumnus/swarming some poor dude

Joe Milholland, marquess of Mondays, takes us to the most recent CCSC meeting, where the discussed topics included building a more helpful and effective student-alumni relationship and of course, without fail, Bacchanal. Read on for survey results, interesting quotes, and typical council drama.

“We were invisible. I didn’t even know what it was until I got asked to join it,” said Columbia College Alumni (CCA) Chair Kyra Barry, CC  ’87, about the presence of her organization on campus during her time at Columbia. Barry came to Sunday night’s Columbia College Student Council (CCSC) meeting, where alumni-student interaction was a big topic.

She explained that CCA is an independent body, although “how independent we’ve been waxes and wanes.” It’s been around for 150 years, and the idea for the lion as a mascot came from CCA, as did the idea of gym equipment in dorms. Barry laid out the CCA’s three main focuses: development, engagement, and the state of the college.

“Starting around 2000, we became very, very focused on development,” said Barry. Development for CCA is mostly fundraising. Barry said that Columbia College is ranked highly in many areas besides the number of alumni who give and that the fund from donations goes to things like financial aid and student services.

Barry also talked about the process involved in students contacting alumni, which she said was often criticized by students for being too formal and structured. CCA is currently working on a way to digitize Columbia College Women’s Mentoring Program and then expand it to men as well. “I think it’s going to be at least another year before we get it into a structure, that we can start scaling it,” she said. CCA is also meeting with the Alumni Affairs Office to see what the right amount of interaction with students is over their four years.

In terms of career search, Barry said that CCA wants to look at giving more space for career education offices, as well as looking into new networking opportunities based on what students want. She also clarified that a portion of every donation to Columbia goes into the arts and sciences, although this has never been an issue for CCA when soliciting donations.

The council also looked at the data from the Bacchanal survey on Sunday night. Around 1,000 students answered the survey, with the numbers equally split among class year. 51.5% of the responses came from Columbia College students.

67.5% of respondents said they would be willing to pay for Bacchanal, with $5-10 the price range that got the most (30.7%) votes. Most respondents said the partition of the stage affected their enjoyment of Bacchanal, and 47.3% preferred the stage facing Low, with the audience on the steps like during Lupe Fiasco’s 2014 performance (as opposed to a stage in front of Butler or on Low facing Butler). 51.4% of respondents said Bacchanal should receive more funding, and 71.6% said that, in terms of Bacchanal activities, the concert should remain as it is.

In terms of Lion Tamers, the majority of respondents – just over 60% – said they did not interact with them. VP of Communications Grayson Warrick said that some people wrote paragraphs in the survey.

The council debated whether or not the fact that so many respondents were willing to pay for Bacchanal justified the cost it would bring to low-income students. USenator Marc Heinrich brought up that 32% of students identified as low-income in the Quality of Life survey.

Updates (updates document here, minutes document here):

  • Class of 2016 Rep Ecen Senyuva has resigned. CCSC President Ben Makansi said this was because she had 3 unexcused absences, so the council had to vote on initiating impeachment proceedings on her. Makansi used this opportunity to clarify the council’s absence policies (3 unexcused means voting on impeachment, 4 means automatic impeachment with an appeal).
  • Also at the meeting, the council debated what to do with the space that will become available once Cafe East begins sharing its space with Cafe 212, as is expected next year. Student Services Rep Matthew Forrest brought up that a committee was looking at this issue last year. Makansi said the administration probably just wanted the council’s input on what kind of furniture they should put in the space. 2018 President Ezra Gontownik wanted to make the space a bookable study area so that widescreen TVs could be put in the Lerner ramp lounge for watching sports games.
  • After some debate, CCSC unanimously passed a resolution in support of SGA’s campaign to get winter housing for Barnard students.
  • Makansi met with VP for Campus Services Scott Wright, who told him that Dining will be covering the EMF for the rest of the semester.
  • According to Academic Affairs Rep, it’s unlikely that the petition to get a class counted towards the Global Core will get passed. However, she reported that the Committee on Instruction is discussing if P/D/F can apply to core classes.
  • According to Forrest, there will be a ten meal expansion pack to the meal plan for $85, payable via flex, dining dollars, or normal checking.
  • Sandwich Ambassador Kaitlyn Loftus is looking to get day of the week sandwich deals.
  • A look at your future after graduation: “We [the CCA] also co-chair something called the Fund Development Council, which really looks at how do we take people giving at our lower level and kind of move them up in that middle area, which for us is in the $5,000 to $25,000 annually.” – Kyra Barry

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