The President’s Report: Midway Through

Nick Walter

If I can divert your attention for a brief moment from that looming horror which is finals, I have some updates for you. Recall that in the spring elections for Student Congress, when I ran for President, my platform had four main objectives: more swag, more outlets, more space, and more 4.0’s. Over the summer, I settled in with VP Madison and the executive board and began work on those initiatives. Over the fall, I’ve kept you the students informed on the progress on these initiatives. For the final fall edition of the President’s Report, then, here is a quick summary of the progress on The Big 4. My hope is that you do not take this as me saying how awesome I am. With your votes, you hired me to be President. Here is my midterm report on whether or not you made the right choice.

More swag. I promised to bring more OU gear to campus. The plan was simple: buy OU stuff and give it away. The OUSC office in the basement of the OC is crammed with crewnecks, long-sleeved shirts and drawstring bags. Trade in another shirt or hoodie from another school and pick up OU gear. Promise fulfilled? Yes.

More outlets. I promised to work with administration to get more outlets on campus. Unfortunately, they will not be putting any more in existing buildings, because to do so would be massively expensive (wiring issues; consult an engineering person and not yours truly, a criminal justice major, for details). The good news is that OU plans to put more outlets in new buildings and possibly, again depending on how expensive it is, expansions on current buildings. Promise fulfilled? Yes.

More space. I promised to fight for an expansion of the OC. We students have been pushing for this for years; the place is simply too small. We’ve even run out of floor space along the walls in the food court! But our efforts to expand the OC paid off, and there is currently a request for proposals out, which is the first step in the process of expansion. Promise fulfilled? Yes.

More 4.0’s. I promised to fight to bring some semblance of order, consistency, and fairness to OU’s wildly jumbled, confusing, and skewed grading scale. As I am certain you know from painful experience, OU does not have a centralized grading scale. Indeed, within most departments there is considerable flexibility with grading. This means that there can be, say, two English 100 classes. In one, you just need a 95% for a 4.0; in the other, you need a 98%. As if that inconsistency wasn’t enough, in a great number of classes, you need a 99% or higher for that coveted 4. Ninety-nine percent. You won’t find a grading system as hard anywhere in the state, which puts us students at a disadvantage compared to other schools when we graduate. To fix this, I’ve fought tooth and nail these past months to get OU to fix the grading scale. Over the fall, they pulled several administrators, faculty and staff to look at doing just that. Now, it may appear as though “forming a committee to look at the problem” isn’t a mighty leap forward, but that’s how university administration works. It starts at that level, and it will only move forward if we the students continue to push for it to keep going. I am a member of that committee, and I will continue to fight to get this fix through. Promise fulfilled? Yes.

I made four promises to you students when I ran to be your President: more swag, more outlets, more space, more 4.0’s. I have kept those promises. Do not, though, take those “Promise fulfilled? Yes” statements to be final. There is still a great deal of work that needs to be done on those four initiatives, and I will be doing it. As always, if you have any questions about these or any other projects OUSC is working on, shoot me an email ([email protected]), send me a Facebook message, or stop by my office in the basement of the OC. Until next time, then, good luck on finals, enjoy your break, and Merry Christmas!