Be The Change You Want To See: Commentary on Changes Made Over Break

By Katie Tabeling
Opinion Editor

It has been two weeks since Washington College welcomed students back to campus. Everyone eagerly moved back into their dorm rooms, unpacked essential things, (movies, video games, ramen and the such) and reluctantly cracked open their books to prepare for their classes. Classes are in full swing, and already students are preparing for that dreaded essay that’s coming up next week. Despite all our groaning about actually having to do actual work, we are all excited to be welcomed back to the familiarity of friends, work, and fun WC has to offer.

While many things have remained the same; same faces, same professors, same dorm room there have been some changes on campus. No, not anything ground-breaking like the library being scattered all over campus like a treasure hunt that was in need of a map; these changes have ranged from big to small and collectively have shook things up within the student body.

Not only do we have a library again, but it comes with an impressive café to cater to the night owl crowds. After many months of construction work, the Johnson Fitness Center has more spacious rooms- no more do we need to dread the crowded work-outs! The Goose Nest, formerly known as the Gaming Center, is preparing for its bar’s opening. One change that defiantly took me by surprise my first day back was the addition of couches and lounge chairs in Hodson Dining Hall. (My compliments to whoever came up with that one- I have no idea why no one ever thought of it before.)At least now when I’m waiting for my friends to come to Java George, I can do it in style.

On the other hand, we have a lot of changes that have gotten negative feedback. While we do have the wonderful resources the library has to offer, free printing is no longer one of them. Students have to pay with their accounts, and later their own money, making printing a rare commodity. Students may have also noticed another, subtler change in their diets. The Dining Hall is now serving grilled cheese, hamburgers and chicken with every meal, an email from Dining Services explains, as per suggestion from WC students. Although Dining Services is doing a tremendous job in listening to the voice of the student population, the word on the white boards during meals has been less than enthusiastic about these changes.

These changes may seem like nothing taken individually, but each little thing adds something to the bigger picture of our college experience. How do the students handle the printing issue these days? How do my fellow classmates feel about WC alcohol being offered to of-age students? The small changes that WC made in the students’ absence has affected each and every one of us. Some of us are already complaining to our friends, some may not have noticed how the changes in their daily lives yet.

The fact of the matter is changes will always happen. How people will react to the differences the campus has to offer is what will change the tides at WC. While students were unhappy with meals of the past, we now have a Dining Hall director who is interested in what the students have to eat. The Goose Nest and the late night café are products of students’ interest and allowing their voices to be heard. As a new semester at WC begins with new changes for the campus, we should not look around us and find a way to silently deal with it and saving our complaints to our friends. Look around and think about the change you want to bring to our campus.

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