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Student leaders hold open meeting

Discussion centered on the College’s pros and cons

Zoe Covey
Contributing Writer

On Monday night, the Strategic Planning & Priorities Advisory Committee (SPPAC) held an open meeting with the intention of facilitating a dialogue with Wooster students about ways that the College is succeeding as a place of learning and living, as well as the ways that it is failing.

The moderators of this discussion, Maggie Sestito ’18 and Jordan Griffith ’19, focused the meeting around the acronym SWOT, which stands for “Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.”

Student attendees first discussed the colleges that they considered Wooster’s peers and competitors, naming primarily the four other members of the Ohio Five — Denison University, Kenyon College, Oberlin College and Ohio Wesleyan University. They also mentioned large state schools like Ohio University and Ohio State University as major competitors for students in the Midwest.

Strengths of the College that were named were the impending addition of the new life sciences building, Ruth W. Williams Hall of Life Science, the resources open to students through APEX, the excellent professors Wooster has to offer and the array of different activities and programs students can participate in.

This last point is aided by the fact that Wooster is a Division III institution, opening participation in athletics to more students. Independent Study (I.S.) is another major defining factor of the College and generally considered a strength by the students. The City of Wooster was listed as both a strength and weakness in attracting students to the College — a strength because of its charm and accessibility and a weakness because of its inconvenient location and the less than optimal relationship between the residents of Wooster and the College.

Another topic brought up as both a strength and a weakness is Greek life on campus. Students considered the fact Wooster does not have chapters of national Greek organizations to be a major strength, but they highlighted that there were tensions on campus associated with Greek groups -— including over hazing and incidents of sexual assault, like the now-suspended fraternity Phi Omega Sigma.

An additional weakness mentioned by Stephen Lumetta ’18 was the small size of Wooster’s endowment in comparison to other liberal arts institutions in Ohio such as Kenyon and Denison. This impacts what the College is able to do for its students because it has less money to work with than other schools.

Another major weakness of the College discussed by students was the subpar state of physical accessibility for students and other members of the campus community with disabilities.

Students also complained that The College of Wooster is not doing enough to promote environmental sustainability on campus. The “Opportunities” portion of

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