It is utter frustration that motivates me to write this letter. For that, there will be little banter in these lines. I am in no mood to be cute with my words. There is a problem with the quality of teaching at PSU that is making me tremendously frustrated, as I go deeper in debt with each passing quarter.
Teachers need to teach
It is utter frustration that motivates me to write this letter. For that, there will be little banter in these lines. I am in no mood to be cute with my words. There is a problem with the quality of teaching at PSU that is making me tremendously frustrated, as I go deeper in debt with each passing quarter. The problem is not a lack of intelligent, experienced, and capable professors at this school. Those we have. The problem is that many of them teach from PowerPoints that are provided with the teacher’s edition of textbooks.
Though I consider it a fact that the PowerPoint is the lamest way to convey information from one person to another, the insipid lectures that they elicit are not the fault of software developers. The problem lies in the refusal of many professors to include something beyond what appears on the slides. It seems absurd that a professor who takes pride in being a professor would allow all the years of study and professional experience to be pre-empted by someone else’s work, especially when it amounts to an outline of the textbook. Alas…
I know that professors probably intend to use the PowerPoint as an outline, and to deliver a lecture that demonstrates their expertise in the subject, but it doesn’t happen that way. I suspect that professors are using the PowerPoint as an excuse to not prepare a lecture, so when it’s time to go in front of the class they just end up reading from the bullets. They seem to forget everything they learned about public speaking and, with the aid of the PowerPoint outline, try to wing it. Often, they are so robotic in their delivery that when there is a mistake it’s a student who sees it first.
I was really exited to come to PSU. I spent two years at PCC, and was prepared to come to a university with high standards of professionalism. I’m learning that the standards here are actually not very high at all, and that without personal initiative to impart the things that they have come to understand, professors are compelled to do nothing more than read from PowerPoint slides, assign pre-written multiple-choice questions, and use pre-written multiple-choice tests, all of which are provided with the teacher’s edition of the text book.
I beg your pardon, but I want more from school.
Article on House Bill 3318
The issue at hand [“Bill proposes to arm campus safety officers,” May 8] is not that our officers want to carry a gun. They want better training overall and the opportunity to do their job to the fullest potential! Why should an officer that works on a college campus be able to arrest for a warrant but not be able to cite for a minor in possession violation? It’s stupid technicalities like that that this bill would change. Being in a downtown urban area, our officers put themselves at risk every day to keep our campus safe, why should they not be allowed to that job with the proper training and tools?
And why the heck did you not take a picture of an actual officer? We wouldn’t be arming the people we send to open doors and do escorts, such as the one you took a picture of! And furthermore, our officers need a better wage, as we pay too low to actually be able to hire new people. We are not offering competitive wages now; it would sure be nice to offer one in the future.
I also feel that you insulted our officers by printing the comment by Jay Kenton that basically said that the officers we have now would be moved straight over to being police here on campus, and that their ability to pass the psychological test and other screenings would be in question. In fact, the officers here would be given an opportunity to apply for a police officer job here on campus, but would have to pass the screening to get in just like any other applicant.
You also mentioned that running a public safety office is different than running a police department. Care to give any examples? I’m sure you can ask any of the employees here and they will tell you it’s not any different; given that many of the employees here have been around departments, they’d know, and at least be able to provide and example of why it’s not so different.
Students need to be the center of any student processIt wasn’t but a few short months ago that I was serving as chair of the Constitution and Judicial Review Board in the midst of another fiasco where the judgment of students was being called into question from outside emissaries.
I’m currently in Washington, D.C. on an internship, so I’ve been spared a great deal of the rhetoric that’s being spread around this issue, but I hope this offers me a clean perspective.
I feel that the Judicial Board made the correct decision. Part of this is philosophical–as student leaders, we have an obligation to consistently be students in good standing, continuously registered for a minimum number of classes. The constitution articulates that point clearly, and I think it greatly undercuts our reputation and external credos if we decide to show the world that we are riding what already amounts to minimal requirements by a thread.
Secondly, the constitution requires a minimum number of credits to even appear on the ballot. Logically, if a candidate ever falls below that number she or he is ineligible, and votes cast for her or him should be discarded as specified by our constitution.
Finally, I want to discuss bringing the Department of Justice into this matter. We, as a Judicial Board, previously employed their services when we were hearing Angela Leonardo’s case. It was clear during our meeting with PSU’s general counsel that he barely skimmed our governing documents; at one point in our privileged conversation he flip-flopped between calling a governing organ of ASPSU an elected body and an appointed one. To accept the advice of an outside party, ill-informed as to the composition of student government when deliberating matters this critical and complex baffles me. No one is invested in student issues as we, the students, are.
The crux of my position is this: We should be fighting for a student-owned process. That means we both need to trust our own rulings and our own judgment, but it also means that we’re saddled with the onus of being accountable, unquestionable, to our self-created regulations.
Kenny BondelieFormer chair of the Constitution and Judicial Review Board