The value of campus clubs
thanks for your insights, Benjamin (“ The case
for campus clubs,” by Benjamin Miller, October
issue). I’m lucky to be able to witness first-hand
how valuable student clubs are, both to a school’s
community and to individuals. Social capital, or
the relationships and networks within a community, is one of the most important assets any
society or community has. Voluntary organizations like clubs foster these networks especially
well. Student clubs are the perfect training
ground for building skills like leadership, event
planning, budgeting, and member engagement,
but they’re not just for over-achieving keeners!
They’re there for students who have trouble with
public speaking or making friends, for students
who know a lot or a little about certain issues or
industries. Once people get participating in their
community, they become more engaged in their
studies and careers. They create value both
through their contributions and within themselves by enriching their own experience. Everyone benefits.
Ms. Smith is club program coordinator at the BCIT (British Columbia Institute of Technology) Student Association in Burnaby, B.C.
A new name, but similar responsibilities
i was pleased to see that McMaster University
was mentioned in the article, “More universities
seeking coordinated response to sexual violence
on campus” (October issue). Perhaps our own
institutional memory is at fault for the recent
date (2015) listed for the start of our sexual violence response coordinator, but it is pertinent
that McMaster had a sexual harassment and
anti-discrimination officer beginning in 1992.
The title and the responsibilities of that person
pertained to sexual violence as well as other misconduct.
I worked with the office on policies and on
several cases when I was dean of graduate studies. The officer was here from 1992 to 2011. I
thought her appointment was a remarkable initiative. By using the term violence, the matter
has been given renewed attention, so in that
sense the article and timeline are significant.
Dr. Weaver is a professor of history at McMaster University.
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