Campus leaders discuss security, organizational updates

The Student President’s Roundtable (SPR) met on March 1 to discuss campus safety and the agendas of each student organization.

On campus security, Undergraduate Student Government (USG) Student Body President Ivy Petsinger said that USG has closely worked with Jay Hodge, the chief of police, and Frank Demes, executive director of Public Safety, both of whom “have been very open to hearing student concerns.”

On Feb. 19, a fatally wounded man was left on the parking lot of the Theta Chi fraternity house, sparking widespread concerns regarding campus safety. Petsinger said that USG worked closely with officials last year to ensure better communication with the student body, and that USG will continue to advocate for frequent security alerts like those released in response to February’s incident.

University Media Board (UMB) Chair JP O’Hagan, however, expressed concerns with current security alert practices. Referencing another incident involving an armed youth inside Tinkham Veale University Center, also in February, he pointed out the delayed response by campus security.

“When the on-campus incident occurred, there was no reason to believe that there was a threat. It was only later that officers discovered that one of those detained had a weapon,” O’Hagan said. “The delayed response allowed for misinformation and paranoia on campus, and leads to mistrust of the campus police.”

Under the Clery Act, an outline of security protocols on college and university campuses, institutions which participate in federal financial aid programs are required to disclose information about crimes on and around campuses through a published crime log. It also requires the publishing of an annual security report.

These measures, according to the Division of Public Safety, are designed to help “students, faculty and staff make informed decisions about their personal safety.”

Associate Vice President of the Office of Student Affairs Janice Gerda, advisor of the SPR, noted that if students seek information that does not rise to the level of the Clery Act, they can check the Case Western Reserve University Daily Crime Log, which is updated on the Division of Public Safety’s online page.

Meanwhile, each organization discussed internal updates, most of which regard leadership positions and upcoming events.

The Residence Hall Association (RHA), whose elections took place the previous Monday, is preparing for its annual Love Where You Live Week. From April 2 through 6, the event is designed to raise awareness and morale about happenings in the Cleveland community, and to give students an opportunity to share their favorite aspects of the city with their peers.

The Undergraduate Diversity Collaborative (UDC) remarked that interest in executive leadership positions is high this year. UDC is also gearing up for its World Expo, which will take place on March 24. The event showcases diversity within the CWRU community, and celebrates cultural and ethnic traditions.

USG is currently studying the demographics of the CWRU community based on its recently gathered Meet Full Need statistics, and is also focusing on the needs of the CWRU transgender community. Petsinger added that various representatives will meet with Vice President of Student Affairs Lou Stark to discuss a resource center for supplemental educational services.

The acceptance of non-binary members is being discussed by the Panhellenic Council (PHC), which constitutes the campus sororities. The Interfraternity Council (IFC) is planning Greek Tours, an initiative to get members of Greek Life familiar with other chapters’ houses. Additionally, bystander intervention training will be required for all new IFC members.

The Class Officer Collective (COC) reported that it has officially become a SEED organization, while underclass COC officers are editing the group’s constitution and bylaws.