Letter: In times of turmoil, administration should rise up and students must not turn on one another
The Blue & Gray Press Editorial Board,
As a body of under 4,000 students, the University of Mary Washington is truly something that is unique in Virginia. Walking under the same rain-washed bricks, in tune with the cycles of exam-induced stress and unfolding with close friends on ball circle, our university represents the ideal of community. We enter this town for a small fraction of our lives, age alongside the town of Fredericksburg and move on to the world with our newfound experiences.
Our time of our life in this town matters. What we are taught, what we are told, how we are treated by our peers and leaders all come into play. These interactions and events form our perception and willingness and ability to interact with world when we graduate.
In light of all that has happened recently in our community, sudden and drastic tuition hikes, rejection of the voice of students demanding divestment, the threatened termination of the music education programs and the heated feud between Feminist United and the Rugby community, students need a perspective that does not pit us against each other through the digital-aggressions of Yik Yak.
Our administration has taken a step back in light of these disasters. Support was sent in the form of cryptic emails with little information or assurance. Some students have been on the receiving end of vulgar and dehumanizing insults, as well as death threats. Our administrators have been with us in UMW’s prime moments, such as our tailgate, or our homecoming, or the freshman welcoming ceremony. But, when the going got rough, they have shown that they are not willing to put themselves out there, assert themselves as leaders and stand beside our community as it goes through these difficult times. We need our leaders to lead in times like these. We need them to stand firmly on the side of their students and act as role models of honor and integrity. We have seen them lead in the past, and we need them to rise to this occasion and do so again.
I ask that The Blue & Gray Press publishes an editorial that stands with the students and writes an editorial for Thursday, March 24 that works to unite the students together, as opposed to pitting them against each other, like what has resulted from the negligence of our administration. If we want to stand together as a community, it is imperative that we do not place the blame on each other, but instead work together to hold our leaders accountable and to make sure that our time here at this institution has the best possible outcome on us that it can.
Rabib Hasan is a senior at the University of Mary Washington.