By Hank Bedingfield
Student Trustee Lily Weissgold ’20 and Student Body President Ethan Greenberg ’20 addressed an audience of three students in a mostly-empty Worner meeting room on Oct. 8 to commence the first CCSGA town hall since 2017.
In attendance was one CCSGA member and two non-affiliated students including myself — a student journalist, assigned with cover the meeting.
Weissgold and Greenberg held the townhall with the intention of increasing transparency between student governing organizations and students. In the first of a series of quarterly town hall events, Weissgold and Greenberg aimed to answer any and all questions students had regarding the work of student government organization, CCSGA, and the Colorado College Board of Trustees.
“We want to hear whatever questions and concerns the student body has about the board of trustees, and I want to clarify what exactly the board does and has been doing,” Weissgold said, speaking on behalf of the CC Board of Trustees, hoping to provide insight into the organization of which many students are only peripherally aware. Greenberg voiced similar intentions regarding CCSGA.
Isabella McShea ’20, the only other non-CCSGA student in attendance, responded to their inquiries by voicing her concerns with recent trends at CC. McShea, concerned by the growing number of crack-downs on house parties in the area, was a key contributor to the “Party Letter.” This letter, written by senior students in off-campus homes, questioned CC administration about the trend and warned of the cultural aftermath such “anti-party” actions could have.
“General connection at this school is an issue,” said McShea. She elaborated by saying that shutting down off-campus parties could lead to increased feelings of isolation among individual students and growing exclusivity among student groups, on top of general boredom. She cited the Block Plan itself as making community and social connection disproportionately difficult, and that these limitations would be exacerbated by strictness surrounding off-campus parties.
Greenberg and Weissgold acknowledged the potential severity of this issue on general campus health and morale and agreed to take it on. They also acknowledged the difficulties confronting what appears to be a problem with no clear solution.
After McShea’s contributions, the town hall took a more routine turn, highlighting the recent work of the CCSGA. After proudly plugging the technological strides the CCSGA has recently made — including a website, reactivated Twitter, and “finsta” — Greenberg went on to mention the work CCSGA has done on campus signage.
The signs in question, serving as sentinels at every entrance point of campus, read “Trespassing,” in a clear, red, bold lettering. Greenberg and CCSGA have been engaged in dialogue with President Jill Tiefenthaler since as early as August in attempt to remove those signs.
Greenberg has also been occupied with some statewide collegiate diplomatic measures. CCSGA hopes to lead students throughout the state in creating a coalition that will more effectively represent student interests, politically. To spearhead these efforts, CCSGA wrote a constitution for the creation of such a coalition, which was ratified by eight other colleges. Their most recent intercollegiate meeting included participation from all eight colleges.
Other important work CCSGA has enacted includes recent voter registrations efforts during the course of New Student Orientation, when hundreds of incoming first-year students became registered voters. These efforts will continue through voter registration drives preceding upcoming state, city, and school board elections.
Weissgold and Greenberg expressed optimism for the upcoming event “Bring a Friend to CCSGA” on Oct. 27, when students will be encouraged to see what CCSGA is all about.