Council to bring unity to college

While all other colleges and schools on campus have their own student councils, the College of Arts & Sciences has operated without one since the early 1990s. However, some students are attempting to revive tradition.

Several of the Arts & Sciences students working to bring back the governing body include senior Declan Glynn, freshman Sarah Kirby, junior Brent Bray and sophomore Jimmy Tobyne. Glynn, Bray and Tobyne are current Marquette Student Government senators for Arts & Sciences.

The students said they want the College of Arts & Sciences Council to be a meeting point for many diverse majors and to promote unity among these majors.

Tobyne said all undergraduate Arts & Sciences students can attend meetings. The next meeting, where people will elect council leaders, is set for Wednesday, Feb. 23, at 6:30 p.m. in Cudahy 401.

Those who want to run for the positions can submit their applications by Friday to Stephani Richards-Wilson, assistant dean for recruitment and retention for the College of Arts & Sciences.

Glynn said next year's Arts & Sciences freshmen will have the chance to fill leadership positions at the start of the fall semester.

Tobyne drafted the council's constitution and said it will be submitted for approval to the Office of Student Development soon. From there, the constitution will proceed to MUSG for final approval.

The college council would serve as a nexus for multi-talented students, Kirby said.

"This is just a way to bring the College of Arts & Sciences to more of a community atmosphere," she said. "I think it's important that we need this because we can bring in speakers and we can bring events that foster skills Arts & Sciences students have."

The students recognize the difficulties of bringing a varied group of majors together in one council.

"We're trying to bridge the gap between a biology major and a political science major or somebody majoring in French," Tobyne said. "It's kind of an unusual challenge because there's a vast array of different people in the college."

According to Glynn, College of Arts & Sciences students often find career-hunting difficult because they have a lot of broad options unlike students with more streamlined curricula.

Kirby said she wanted to bring in speakers and potential employers to meet with students. She said the college council may organize formal events with local employers and social events for students, too.

In her search for programming ideas, Kirby explored similar events that have already been developed by other colleges.

An example is the College of Business Administration's formal dinner, Richards-Wilson said.

Tobyne said the College of Arts & Sciences hired another staff member, who will serve as the council's adviser, among other things.

This article appeared in The Marquette Tribune on Feb. 17 2005.