The Yellow Jacket

The Student Voice of Randolph-Macon College

The Yellow Jacket

The Yellow Jacket

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RMC Spring Presidential Forum 2024

President Lindgren and the Student Government Association held their biannual  Presidential Forum with Dean Azdell, Provost Rosenthal, John McManus, Brenda Poggendorf, Angus McQueen and Paul Davies on March 25th, 2024 to address student body concerns regarding dining, IT and technological issues, physical plant issues, and class scheduling concerns. 

The forum began with IT, where Mr. McQueen stressed the contact information for ITS, where 24/7 service is available to students. Students are asked to add their full name, location, and time of the issue in their work order in order for ITS to accurately address the issues presented. Further, he touched on the network refresh project, which is an initiative to refresh all campus networks, add cables, replace data centers, and replace wireless access points. By making these changes, connecting devices to the school network will be much easier, and the complicated process of connecting devices besides computers and iPhones will be much more streamlined to match student needs. He also addressed the new digital signage around campus, saying that that project is not ITS but is helpful regardless. 

The next section was about dining, a current hot topic on campus. Chef Blair and Rachel Milburn, with Parkhurst, were quick to address the J-Term miscommunications regarding dining, and the things put into place to remedy the issues presented. The town hall really affected Parkhurst, causing them to take a step back to assess the program as a whole. They started by highlighting the changes to the menu, putting student favorites further up in frequency, and getting rid of meals that were less of fan favorites. Sloppy joes are out and acai bowls are in! 

They went on to address the taco bowl station, and explain the brainstorming that led to this addition. Originally, there were going to be alternations of Asian cuisine as well as tacos, but the Asian cuisine provided was not as popular. In a show of good will towards the voices of the student body, they rewired the plan, making the taco bowls permanent. 

Chef Blair and Mrs. Milburn also have heard murmurs of wanting a sweet treat option in Birdsong Grill to round the meals provided. Cookies and brownies should start to pop up in the coming weeks! Additionally, after hearing student concerns about cleanliness as well as general dissatisfaction, Estes will receive a full remodel over the summer, and should look completely different in the fall! This means putting cooking equipment out front to ensure freshness standards are being met, more in the style we have now in Bravo! 

There have been issues of the green to go boxes, namely, returning them. Many students had noticed the new throwaway boxes, and were concerned about environmental standards. Parkhurst assures that these are also reusable, but stresses that the green to-go boxes are 4 dollars a piece, and incredibly expensive on a widespread scale. 

Parkhurst stressed the importance of feedback on the spot. Supervisors are always available in Estes and Birdsong, and if there is an issue, they would prefer it be handled while the event is happening. They assured that they check the feedback form and comment board between meal swaps, but a lot of trouble can be prevented by addressing issues while they happen. 

The floor was then opened to student questions. Provost Rosenthal was asked about issues with faculty, and where to go to address said issues. She responded that a student with an issue should always exhaust the issue with the professor first before bringing it above their head. From there, the department chair can get involved, and then if a solution has still not been reached, the provost can get involved. 

Rosenthal was also asked about the ability to change professors within the same class. To which she urged that this can be done if there is availability within the add and drop period, but this cannot be done in the middle of the semester. 

The next couple of questions were regarding Physical Plant, represented by Paul Davies. If you have classes in Fox, you are well aware of the temperature changes depending on the time of day. Along with the changing of temperature depending on the classrooms you may be in, Mr. Davies addressed that the system is designed to go back and forth between seasons, so the recent fluctuation can’t be kept up with in regards to temperature control. He then asked for specific room numbers to control it in specific areas. The final Physical Plant question was for water filters in dorm halls, which needs to be addressed with the dorm hall’s RA for the submission of a work order. 

Overall, The President’s Forum was a success in addressing hot topics in the student body and working to improve the campus as a whole. All sections and representatives stressed the importance of student input, and the gravity student feedback holds to the panel as a whole. 


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