Senate backs proposal to improve campus communication

University-wide efforts to both improve campus communication and reduce the volume of flyers being pasted to sidewalks and plazas took a significant step forward Nov. 26 with a University Senate vote to recommend a proposal from the Senate's Campus Life Committee.

The proposal calls for the creation of a Communication Office to advise and guide campus organizations and departments in the best use of multiple communication methods according to their specific needs; serve as the most knowledgeable authority on communication issues; and keep informed on the latest communication technology and practices adopted on other campuses. The

proposal also recommends establishing an advisory group charged with creating guidelines for the Communication Office to follow in its work. The guidelines will be consistent with all Emory policies on freedom of speech and privacy.

In addition, the proposal calls for the Senate to:

* Acknowledge and support the work of the existing Task Force on Litter and the planned task force regarding bulletin boards, both created by Vice President and Dean for Campus Life Frances Lucas-Tauchar;

* Support the creation of an umbrella task force that will investigate and document all means of communication currently in use on campus and their potential effectiveness. The task force, which will include all those currently working on such issues, also will serve as an informational and factual resource for all efforts to improve existing campus communication methods; and

* Provide continuity and follow-up to the proposal's resolutions by charging the Senate Campus Life Committee with communicating the work of the advisory group and the appropriate task forces to the Senate so that the entire campus can remain informed on issues of campus communication.

When asked where the Communication Office would be located, Campus Life Committee Chair Judy Raggi Moore said the proposal makes no recommendation in that regard because the office would encompass activities and responsibilities on a much broader scale than those traditionally carried out by Campus Life.

Also present at the Senate meeting was Jeremy Berry, president of the Student Government Association (SGA). Berry announced that on Nov. 25, the day before the Senate action, the SGA passed a resolution stating its position on campus flyers. The resolution: calls for a reduction in the use of flyers as a form of event advertising; supports the work of the Senate Campus Life Committee and others in creating alternative methods of campus communication (including kiosks and bulletin boards and creating a Communication Office) and improving communication in general; and allows the continued use of flyers as a form advertising until another adequate form of advertising is found, but with the admonition that student groups "must be conscious of the impact that it has on the beauty of the campus and must be responsible for the removal of the flyers."

In response to the reading of the SGA resolution at the Senate meeting, President

Bill Chace asked Berry how student groups would be held responsible for cleaning up their flyers. Berry said that most groups are cleaning up their flyers within 48 hours after the event advertised. He added that Facilities Management is continuing to clean up flyers left for a longer period and to charge the student groups responsible.

Berry said the SGA is in full support of the Campus Life Committee's proposal, which will be forwarded to President Chace for his consideration.

--Dan Treadaway

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