New Honors House plans in place

By Leah Miza, Photo Editor

A new Honors House is being funded by anonymous donors and will be built where the former Inter-Faith House stands.

Twenty-seven students will be able to move into the new house by fall 2017.

Amanda Barry, student honors program coordinator, said the honors program has been seeking to create a larger sense of community for the past several years.

“It was expressed that having a larger house where more students—30, give or take—could live and interact together would help to achieve this goal,” she said.

Amy McClure, co-director of the honors program, said the new structure will possibly host seminars, classes and study rooms.

We have an office and study area but we can’t get in it,” she said. “It’s locked all the time. So, we don’t really have a space that’s viable.”

McClure discussed another idea that was tossed around. “For the upstairs, we’re looking at different configurations of rooms. One of the things that they have suggested are special singles that are very small. That encourages people to mingle in the common area.”

Amy Downing, co-director of the program, said, “The house will have more common spaces and some teaching spaces in the form of small seminar rooms. The Honors Board will be working closely with students to determine how to best utilize these new resources in the context of the broader Honors Program at OWU.”

Although not much can be said on the donors, McClure said, “They’re very interested in the honors program, so it just became a natural fit.”

The current Honors House will be passed on to a current Small Living Unit, said Colleen Garland, director of development.

Bashford renovation put on indefinite hold

 By John Bonus, Transcript Reporter

Ohio Wesleyan’s plans to renovate Bashford Hall this year have been canceled, despite students not mov- ing into the facility this semester.

Bashford was previously scheduled to be demolished this year and replaced with a new residence facility mainly for first-year students, which is why the hall is empty.

The project is not happening this year because the school doesn’t currently possess the funds for renova- tion of residence halls, said President Rock Jones.

Decisions have not been made in regard to students moving into the hall in the near future and this will likely be the case until administration knows exactly how many students will be coming to campus next year.

Jones said one possible scenario in the long-term future would be to replace both Bashford and Thomson with complex housing for all first-year students. However, no source of funds have been identified for this kind of project.

While the project for Bashford may be dead, Jones said, there are still plans to improve student living situations.

“We will be making small improvements that I am confident students will appreciate as we seek to in- crease the quality of life in our residence halls,” Jones said.

One of these improvements will be the installation of new lounge furniture in some of the residence halls by the spring semester. The furniture will be placed in Smith and Welch.

The addition of new furniture was recently approved by the Wesleyan Council on Student Affairs (WCSA).

Nick Melvin, a class of 2019 representative for WCSA, said the council decided the new furniture was a good use of its resources for improving residential life.

“WCSA passed the bill for new furniture to make more comfortable living situations for students that will hopefully contribute to a better community overall,” Melvin said.

ResLife offers ways to be aware of alcohol consumption on campus

By Areena Arora, Managing Editor

Every year, more than 1,800 college students between the ages of 18 and 24 die from alcohol-related injuries in the United States, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA).

Factors such as unstructured time, widespread availability of alcohol and inconsistent enforcement of underage drinking laws contribute to college students’ alcohol consumption, according to NIAAA’s website.

On Feb. 7, freshman Luke Gabbert was found dead in the Delaware Run Creek, south of 28 Franklin St.

Hypothermia and an injury in the upper cervical spine from falling in the creek caused his death. Alcohol at the level of 0.21 percent was also detected, which is nearly three times the legal limit of 0.8 percent.

Gabbert was a new pledge of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity and also a soccer player.

In May, Gabbert’s file was closed by the Delaware County Prosecutor who concluded no felony charges will be filed. Julie Datko, public information officer, said Gabbert’s file will not be presented to grand jury.

Meredith Dixon, assistant director of Residential Life said ResLife, takes an active role in preventing alcohol-related accidents in several ways—by providing educational programming related to alcohol and drugs, by offering programs that provide an alternative to drinking and by enforcing campus policies.

Bob Wood, director of Public Safety, said, “We recognize alcohol consumption is a huge issue … Our officers are always actively patrolling and our first priority is always the safety of the student.”

According to OWU’s student handbook, “Immediate medical attention should be sought for students whose safety is endangered by the overconsumption of alcohol or other drugs.”

Dixon said, “The Amnesty Policy is also set up as a resource for students … This policy is in place because we, as a university, are not seeking to get students in trouble – we want to get students help.”

The Amnesty Policy, written in the student handbook, says, “Students who seek medical attention for themselves or others because of the overconsumption of alcohol or other drugs will not be charged with violations of the alcohol or illegal drugs policies through the Office of Student Conduct. However, students who repeatedly endanger themselves by overconsumption may face administrative intervention in other forms.”

If students choose to drink, Dixon said she recommends they plan ahead—know who is hosting the party/event, who will accompany them and have a plan for when to leave/how to find their friend if separated.

“Don’t accept drinks from anyone you don’t know, and don’t drink anything if you don’t know what it is or where it came from,” she said.

She also said students should recognize what their limits are and drink less than that. If you realize you’ve had too much to drink, ask a sober friend for help or call Public Safety.

“Again, per the Amnesty Policy, we’d rather have students get help when they need it than try to handle things themselves when they are in need of medical attention,” she said.

Wood said that OWU has a pretty good reputation for tolerance. It is OK to drink or not. “Do what’s comfortable for you,” he said, emphasizing that students shouldn’t feel pressured into drinking alcohol.

There are plenty of resources on campus to help with alcohol-related issues.

Dixon said, “If students are concerned about alcohol abuse, there are several resources on campus, which include Counseling Services, Health Services and the Chaplain’s Office (all of which are confi-
dential). If students have concerns about a friend or roommate, their RA or RLC can help them approach that subject with their friend [to] provide assistance.”

On Tuesday, Aug. 30, more than 500 OWU athletes took the “It’s on Us,” pledge. OWU’s athletics department is focusing this year’s programming on a national NCAA program called “It’s on Us.”

According to an email by faculty athletic representatives, the national program was student-initiated and is aimed at promoting proactive prevention and reporting sexual assault.

“The motto, “It’s On Us,” communicates that each person has a responsibility in this cause,” according to the email.

On Friday, Sept. 2, OWU’s soccer team hosted a memorial game for Gabbert and played against Hope College. Gabbert’s jersey (number 19) was retired at the game.