I have been following the winter scenes on Campus for the last few days.
I have often thought that I wished that I had taken some winter photographs with snow and ice and now I have some. I am afraid that the bitter cold of this winter, thus far, is more difficult to portray…but until just a couple of days ago, it was a presence that you could wear like an overcoat.
I noticed many more students walking between buildings this afternoon. It is finally a few degrees above freezing.
SIU is a full of people…and at times can be a lonely place.
So often, we are consumed with out own lives and personal agendas and either afraid or do not know how to begin…or are not interested in reaching out to our fellow human beings…that, in all likelihood feel the need for human interaction as much as we do.
I regularly pass students who are looking at their smart phones, in the midst of hundreds of their fellow University Travelers.
I read, the other day, that some professors and staff and students have comprised a committee to examine chancellor Montemagno’s restructuring plan. They have broken into four working groups and are looking for individuals who will be committed to academic research as to the benefit, or lack thereof, of the chancellor’s plan.
Now, this is a very worthy enterprise and would seem beneficial in an academic institution and will probably be time consuming…and then what?
Will the academics and the staff and the students then exclaim a plan that will work to turn the University’s enrollment around?
Will they subsequently stand behind their administrative endeavor and take responsibility for the problems that may be associated with it?
I have been a member of several University Wide Enrollment Committees.
Two of them were; The Committee for the Undergraduate Experience and Southern @ 150.
Another, was a Blue Ribbon Committee commissioned by Provost/Interim Chancellor Dunn that had over fifty members.
Comprehensive reports were written. I have the copies. Agreements were made.
Little to no action…was taken.
Action is stimulating!
Actively working to ameliorate our enrollment problems can be a catalyst to sparking additional energy and moxie and the ‘will’ to do what needs to be done.
I have known several chancellors and a president.
They are lonely jobs.
Management and administration are lonely jobs…when they are done sincerely and done right.
I was a manager for over twenty-five years.
I felt lonely… many times.
I passed the chancellor today on my walk. He does not know me…but I recognized him.
He looked lonely…to me.