Arjun Gopinath

Arjun Gopinath

Year: First
Major: Biology, Medical Anthropology
Hometown: Bangalore, India

What is your biggest goal for USG in the 2014-2015 Academic Year?
I would like to refine the SAGES program and ease graduation requirements for undergraduate students.

Other campus positions outside of USG: 
Vice President – Taft House, RHA
Brother, Delta Chi Fraternity
Peer Tutor for CHEM 105/106, ESS

Prior USG experience / initiatives undertaken
College of Arts and Sciences Representative, member of Student Life Committee. Currently working on initiatives which include the usage of space in the common areas, reserving rooms on campus for general purposes and reformatting the SAGES program. I plan to ease graduation requirements by reformatting the SAGES program and voluntary replacement of PHED courses with participation in the new Fitness Plan slated to be introduced next fall in conjunction with 1-2-1 Fitness for the physical education requirement.

What is the biggest issue you see your position having to face? How do you specifically plan on tackling it?
There could be potential friction between the Office of Undergraduate Studies and USG regarding easing graduation requirements. Ultimately both groups are working for the overall development and welfare of the Undergraduate Student Body, therefore arriving at a consensus with the concerned officials by fairly and justly representing the interests of fellow students would be my top priority.

What are your views on the role of the SAGES program in a CWRU education? What challenges does the program face with growing class sizes?
The SAGES program plays an integral role in developing and refining the writing and presentation skills of undergraduate students at CWRU. Such skills are highly valued in the fast-paced workplace and appreciated by graduate/professional schools and future employers alike. With growing class sizes, there will be a need to increase the number of SAGES fellows which would place a strain on the SAGES department. This could be of-fset by transferring the SAGES responsibilities solely to the departments themselves where SAGES courses could be treated as Departmental Seminars and be treated as major requirements. A model similar to the Department Seminar model followed in the School of Engineering could be implemented.

What role should Mediavision play in learning? Would you like to see a more widespread use of it?
Mediavision reinforces the learning that takes place in the classroom. It allows for students with illnesses and other circumstances to catch up with classwork despite their absence. However, an unfortunate situation of it being a replacement for classroom participation has turned up. This has reduced the efficiency of the initiative and hence should be restricted to large-lecture classes primarily frequented by freshmen to help smooth the transition between high school and college. After that, it should be left to the professor to decide whether Mediavision access should be given to the students or not as it can be put to bad use which in the long run is detrimental to both the professor and the students.