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Students across campus fight for voices to be heard against cuts

Students met on Thursday Oct. 22 to create " I Love Book Art" buttons and drafted demands in response to the administration's recent proposals. ( Courtesy of Mills College Book Art Instagram)
Students met on Thursday Oct. 22 to create ” I Love Book Art” buttons and drafted demands in response to the administration’s recent proposals. (Courtesy of Mills College Book Art Instagram)

Today, October 22, a slew of emails were sent out among Mills students regarding the proposal to curriculum changes, department cuts and the town hall meeting the day before, Oct 21.

The emails varied from organization times, open letters and surveys.  Many students are still uncertain if their voices are being heard and are making sure that the voices of the students will be heard.

Senior Erica Veitch sent out a survey to students asking them to submit their input on the proposals.

Another email, sent out by MFA candidate Nora McKinnon reads: “After attending the “Town Hall” meeting on Wednesday, we left feeling as unclear if not more than we did before the meeting. In addition to scheduling meetings with the Provost, we are writing to you now with some of our unanswered questions.”

ASMC Academic Chair Larisa Gearhart issued an email to the student body letting them know that there will be a creation of a “Blue and Gold Paper,” which will respond to the proposals.

“The Blue & Gold Paper will showcase student pride in the uniqueness and academic excellence of Mills College, outline and request further information about curriculum change specifics (including how this will lead to savings), and provide specific suggestions as to how cuts may be made more equitably and constructively while not jeopardizing student services and satisfaction with education, ” Gearhart’s email reads.

A group of students and alumni met on Oct 22 and released list of requests including an extension of the time period of comment. The group argues that three weeks is not sufficient to the community.

The second request is for transparency of the process. They request the release of the school’s operating budget and a full report from the Austen contracting firm mentioned in President DeCoudreaux’s 10/19 memo.

There will be a meeting on Monday, Oct 26 in NSB 215 from 6:30-7:30 p.m. where the Blue and Gold paper (named after Mills’ colors), will be formed and edited.

To submit ideas or comments for the Blue and Gold, please submit them here.

To read the press release and list of demands look here.

To participate in Veitch’s survey go here.

To read McKinnon’s email go here.