STORY BY ADAM ROGAN
Future curriculum changes highlighted Thursday’s Drake University Student Senate meeting.
Sen. Olivia O’Hea and Treasurer Kevin Maisto spoke on curriculum changes that Drake will experience in the next few years. Both O’Hea and Maisto are part of a committee of 13 students, administration and staff representing each college at Drake, headed by Sandra Henry of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication.
It has already been decided that the core, areas of inquiry, AOI, based curriculum will change at some point in approximately two to three years, the finer details still need to be pinpointed. The committee will report on what it believes the plan of action should be to an executive board in November, with a final, definitive model to be prepared by March 2015. What is known for certain is that the AOI system will be removed from Drake’s curriculum.
There are two general plans that were laid out, one of which will likely be selected as the new Drake curriculum.
The first is the integrated core. This plan would require a year-long First-Year Seminar opposed to the current one-semester FYS.
Subsequent years will then require students to take interdisciplinary classes, moving to more focused classes in the sophomore and junior years, finishing with a senior capstone. The main goal of this potential curriculum is to add depth to the classes, rather than having scattered learning across the board.
The second proposed plan is the Majors/Minors model, where every student would be required to have three majors or minors, divvied up as the student sees fit. A minor would only be about 12 credits to complete and each minor must be in a different field other than the other majors or minors. This plan aims to foster the interdisciplinary atmosphere that liberal arts colleges are based on.
Later in the meeting, the Senate voted to allocate an additional $1,500 to the Students For Justice in Palestine club in order to help cover expenses for an advocacy trip. The money will be spent on flights for the group. A reimbursement of nearly $1,000 will be returned to the Senate if all goes well.
The Senate also discussed plans for several Senate members who met with Drake’s Board of Trustees the next day, Oct. 17. Those meeting with the Board were focused on relaying the Senate’s plan for the year and goals outlined in the Senate 60.
Vice President Josh Duden’s tip of the week was “Be careful of what you say,” in regards to the recent violent threat made on the Yik Yak app and responses to it on other social media. Dean Sentwali Bakari replied to this, saying that security on campus had been increased until the issue was resolved.
On a lighter note, 12 more doors are set to open on campus in early November, including several in Olmsted, making access to the campus hub easier.
Oct. 16 was also National Boss Appreciation Day, so President Joey Gale presented Dean of Students Sentwali Bakari with a signed card from Senate.
“I don’t consider myself a boss,” Bakari said with a laugh, saying he considers all those he works with colleagues, including the Student Senate.