University Committee meeting focuses on expansion, student representationPosted on October 4, 2013 | by Kevin Burns
NYU 2031 was the focus of the first University Committee on Student Life meeting of the semester, held yesterday in the Great Hall at Global Center for Academic and Spiritual Life.
After senior vice president for university relations and public affairs Lynn Brown and vice president of government affairs and community engagement Alicia Hurley presented on the history and current status of the plan, which emphasized the university’s current space needs, student representatives raised questions on the funding and space allocation for the plan. The medical school, Graduate School of Arts and Science, Commuter Student Council and the Inter-Greek Council presidents all expressed pressing needs for space.
Brown said the first order of business is allocating the classroom and student study space, but beyond that there are no plans. She also said NYU 2031 is consistent with the university’s financial plan on renovations over the last five years. Brown stated that students should use the 2031 website and contact their representatives if they have further questions or comments.
“There is nothing in this plan now that would include you or exclude you,” Brown said.
Student Senators Council chair and one of two students representatives in the University Space Priorities Working Group, Mariam Ehrari, said when students speak up they are heard. But she also said much of students’ opposition comes from misinformation.
“If there are things that they’re seeing that I’m not seeing, I want to know about it,” Ehrari said.
Corey Blay, a Senator-at-Large and graduate student at the Wagner School of Public Service, said the students have been grossly underrepresented in the group and, as a result, the Student Senators Council is trying to take on that role but does not have the institutional resources to really take on the job. Instead, they would need the help of the working group, which is comprised of student, faculty and administrative representatives and was formed in order to bring a community voice to NYU 2031.
“That was very instrumental in shifting the conversation within the working group,” Blay said.
Kevin Burns is a deputy news editor. Email him at email@example.com.