Forum addresses student concerns

Student outcry over “low flow” shower heads was addressed this week in a campus-wide forum held by WCSA and Sean Kinghorn, energy conservation and sustainability coordinator.
The forum was held on Wednesday, Feb. 1 at noon in Benes. Students voiced concerns about the shower heads themselves, but a call for better communication was also a major theme.
Sophomore Erika Nininger was one of relatively few students who attended the forum.
“I’m not sure how much debate this particular issue is worth, but it’s a good opportunity for students to voice their opinions, and it’s also good to see who’s running things.”
Sean Kinghorn answered students’ questions alongside representatives from the Residential Life office and Eric Algoe, a senior administrator.
“I explained to students that we held a pilot test in Bashford Hall and let students vote, which many students weren’t aware of,” said Kinghorn.
Apparent lack of communication between students and administration about this issue was an underlying criticism that both WCSA and Kinghorn hope to address in the future.
“I’m planning on holding sustainability forums in each of the residence halls to brainstorm with students about future projects and get their ideas and input,” said Kinghorn.
The low student attendance rate belied the amount of student frustration about the issue, a fact that junior Carly Hallal, vice president of WCSA, attributes to poor communication as well.
“The OWU daily isn’t seeming to work the way it was supposed to. We (WCSA) have a blog and a twitter, too, but it seems like we need a better way to reach students,” said Hallal.
Communication seemed to be more harshly criticized at the forum, and an understanding over the shower heads was established by its closing, according to Nininger.
“It seemed that aside from one or two people that there was a consensus that the switch was entirely worth it,” she said.
WCSA hopes to hold similar forums in the future to better communicate with students about changes on campus.
“We try to be as transparent as possible and we really want to hear what students have to say,” said Hallal.

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