Letter to the Editor: Representing all students is the ‘Task’

As an immediate response to the tragic events this university has faced over the last two weeks, President Rozanski has vowed to ensure that these events never happen again here at Rider. In addition to consulting with outside experts on the subject, Rider University has developed a “Task Force” comprising 28 individuals.

I first would like to commend the work that administration has done in such a short time. Rider officials were able to balance the media, the needs of the DeVercelly family and the student body by providing counseling services and disseminating information as it became available.

With that said, I would like to raise awareness about the Task Force, specifically the composition of the members who will be making decisions, which are scheduled to take effect in the Fall of 2007. In an April 5 press release, which is available on the Rider Web site, titled, “Update on the Presidential Task Force,” President Rozanski released the names of those individuals that would serve on this committee.

Six students, Zachary Aguanno, Nicholas Bice, Steven Klemchalk, Anthony Rajkumar, Alyssa Ruggiero and Christian Stück, were selected to serve on this committee, comprising about 21 percent of the committee. The rest of the 22 members represent various academic departments and offices throughout campus.

The one unique thing about this committee is the high concentration of Greek members. Five of the six students are affiliated with Greek organizations. The other is a resident on the Princeton campus. That leaves exactly zero [Lawrenceville] student representatives who are independent of Greek affiliation from our resident and commuter populations.

I should see this as a bit of a victory. As an active member of Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity, having three of my brothers on the committee is an honor. Further, having such a high concentration of Greek students will ensure that Greek Life is not thrown under the bus, and that practical solutions can be implemented within Greek houses and throughout campus. Furthermore, the students chosen are of the absolute highest caliber, and I have no doubt that these individuals will do their absolute best to represent Rider University and their constituencies in this committee.

The over-arching purpose of my letter is not to trash administration, this committee, or the efforts being made. I think that the course of action has been appropriate, justifiable and necessary. The purpose of this letter is to alert those students who might assume that someone in the room is representative of their position, which may not be the case. Therefore, it is absolutely imperative that anyone who has any suggestions talk to a member of the committee or voice your concerns to the newly created e-mail: taskforce@rider.edu. In my correspondence with this e-mail, I received a timely response (within 24 hours) and felt as if my ideas were heard. I suggest that any member of the Rider community voice his or her opinion so that changes can be made that will be practical, useful and manageable. The impact that this committee will have on the policies of Rider University will affect us all. Residents, commuters and Greeks alike will share in the adjustments made to our policies, programs and actions. Make sure that your concerns get into the discussion.

— Anthony Coruccini
Senior, Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity

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