In the last public address of his administration, junior and Students? Association President Meng Wang covered what he considered the key issues of his term ? school spirit, dining services, parking, prejudice on campus and freshman housing.
Speaking to a scant crowd of 10 Wednesday afternoon, Wang began by addressing the condition of UR as he sees it ? ?The state of the university is good.?
Wang lauded the new dining system that will go in place next year, citing improvements such as declining balance in the Corner Store and more meal plan options for the upcoming semester.
?Students have a much better system to look forward to next year,? Wang said. ?The lack of fixed cost in the new plans is more fair to students. Other universities will want to copy this new policy. Complaints are down and the new plans are, in a word, amazing.?
One area of the plan in which Wang would like to see improvement is options for freshmen. Incoming freshmen will only have two dining plan options. Wang feels that freshmen need a wider range of choices.
He fully supports the push for a pub on campus.
?This campus lacks a place where students can build relations with each other, faculty and staff,? Wang said. ?Initiative is needed to make the pub a reality.?
On the issue of freshman housing, Wang was less enthusiastic.
?Many years from now, freshman housing may work,? he said. ?[But] I don?t think this is the best way to build the kind of campus community that we want.?
Addressing other perceived problems, Wang cited the continued need for more parking for students.
With the changing housing plans, he feels that parking needs to be taken into more serious consideration.
As for the recent outbreak of racial incidents, Wang called for a change in campus culture.
?Improved communication and discussions on campus is the only way to combat this bigotry,? Wang said.
But Wang also had bright topics to address.
The university has improved its school spirit greatly, he said. He cited the success of events such as Sesquicentennial Weekend, Viennese Ball and the Masquerade Ball.
Wang said he is sure these events were successful among students because, as he said, ?I know, because I asked them.?
Wang stressed the need for efforts to keep the campus improving as he leaves his term in office.
He said communication among students and staff is key to maintaining the state of the university.