Where College Council Stands – Jonny Gonzalez

Since last spring, there has been no shortage of criticism for College Council and the low voter turnout in recent years. Last year, participation was at an abysmal 39 percent–a figure that, while looking back at the three previous elections, seems rather remarkable. In the 2011, 2012, and 2013 elections, voter turnout rates were 65 percent, 59 percent, and 64 percent, respectively. When comparing these numbers to last year’s outcome, the sudden drop does not appear to follow a pattern of decreasing participation.

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What are we doing here? – Peter Low, Chair of CEP, Professor of Art; Lee Park, Past Chair of CEP, Associate Dean of Faculty, Professor of Chemistry; et al.

That question isn’t as cheeky as it sounds, based on conversations last year in the Committee on Educational Policy.

The group considered how students here move through the curriculum. We gathered data on enrollments across academic divisions, on majors and double majors, and on other relevant student choices. We also elicited student and faculty opinions on curricular matters through a number of surveys and public discussions. We’d like to highlight some of our findings as a starting point for a broader conversation.

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An Endangered Species – Quentin Cohan and Alex Foucault

The male non-athlete who goes out regularly on the weekends is a rare breed at Williams.

For lack of better options, I decided to hit up a party at an off-campus apartment last weekend. Upon reaching our destination, a friend of mine and I were asked by a Pituitary Case manning the door what teams we played for. My friend, speaking honestly, said lacrosse. I, however, do not play a sport, so I merely nodded my head and walked into the party. The Pituitary Case, confused by my gesture, said to no one in particular, “That kid’s not on the lacrosse team.” I continued on into the party disregarding this friendly gatekeeper figure, but I did begin to wonder: Why did this guy care? More importantly, why did I care? Why did I not just say honestly that I’m not an athlete? Why did I feel intimidated?

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Relocate the Health Center – James Hitchcock

I remember the collective dismay that my pick group felt about a year and a month ago when we realized that

a.) getting 97 as our group pick number within Wood Neighborhood was not a good thing (especially not out of 99 groups, as it later turned out), and

b.) it meant that we’d be confined to the charming but isolated hermitage called Agard for our sophomore year.

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The Birth of a Library – Quentin Cohan

In the fourth Art History 101 lecture in the fall, Professor Michael Lewis explained the history of Williams College’s libraries. The first one was Lawrence Hall (which is now the Williams College Museum of Art), built in 1848. In 1923 Stetson Hall replaced Lawrence as the school’s main library. Fifty years later, Sawyer became the school’s main library, which it has remained ever since. College President Adam Falk said in a video posted online that Sawyer is “396 individual study carrels located around a static collection of books. That is what a library was forty years ago when Sawyer was built, and that is what it has remained.”

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The War on Fun – MS

Yes, there is such a thing. A war on fun is being fought on the hallowed grounds of our Purple Valley, and has been for quite some time.

Before you choose to read no further, let me back up a little and assure you that I am merely following the FOX News method of grabbing some attention.

What I am trying to say is that the college’s responsibility to protect itself from the liability issues associated with underage/binge drinking and the student body’s slakeless thirst constitute two inherently opposed forces. … Read more