Latest College Council minutes from Emily Deans ’09.

College Council
Meeting: Discussing Room Draw and Concerts

Wednesday, April
2, 2008, 7:30-9:00

Meeting in Hopkins
Hall Basement, B03 Classroom

All College
Council Meetings are open to the Williams Community. Anyone who wishes
to speak before Council should contact Peter and Jeremy (09psn and 09jmg_2).

Room Discussion:

Doug
Schiazza (Director of Campus Life) and Aaron Gordon (Assistant Director
of Campus Life) were invited to come speak to CC about potential changes
to the room draw process. In the current system first-year students
can apply for random reassignment in groups of up to 6, as long as the
group is all first-year students. Groups of four or five first-year
students from the same neighborhood, may ask to pull in one more first-year
student from another neighborhood. Upper-class students can apply for
random reassignment in groups of up to 3 (this includes any group with
any upper-class student – for example, if there is a group of 2 first-years
and 1 upper-class student, the group comes under the upper-class policy).

Here
are the options we're considering:

1.
Leave things as they are now.

2.
Add an upper-class pull-in provision to the current policy.

3.
Add a one-to-one swap option to the current policy, with class/gender
restrictions.

4.
Axe the current policy in favor of an annual, optional Neighborhood

Lottery
to take place early in the spring semester: Groups of up to six may
apply, regardless of class-year and current neighborhood affiliation.
Students applying put their neighborhood membership on the block for
the taking by anyone in the lottery. Those who don't apply, default
to their current neighborhood assignment for the following year. The
lottery would be run by seniority, though each neighborhood would have
class caps and gender caps. Students could make a change once in their
Williams career without penalty in the room draw. A second change
would result in a one-point hit for room draw (which means, for example,
a rising junior who decides to change neighborhoods a second time would
be considered a rising sophomore for the room draw), and a third change
would result in a two-point hit for room draw (for example, a rising
senior who decides to change neighborhoods a third time would be considered
a rising sophomore for the room draw). This gives the students some
say in where they go, though it all depends on A) what spaces are given
up by others and available space per neighborhood, B) the demographics
of those who stay put, in regards to class & gender caps, and C)
the class & gender caps as they play out during the lottery itself.

The
consensus of CC members before break was that CC was in favor of the
suggestions, but we wanted to continue the discussion. The aspect of
room draw that we wanted to fix the most was the loophole by which a
student could be pulled into a neighborhood by random people and then
not live with them. The majority of CC members thought that the most
important thing for students is to make sure that people can live with
their friends every year rather than trying to pick a system in which
people switch neighborhoods to try to get the best housing every year.
CJ Flournoy (Minority Concerns) commented that some students want to
try to get the best housing rather than trying to pick in with friends
because their friends may be widely dispersed around campus. Jon Prigoff
(Wood Board Rep) said that was the reason why students would want a
lottery because it would give students more options to find friends
from other places on campus. Emanuel Yekuitel (Class of 2011 Rep) was
in favor of extending policies to freshmen but worried that freshmen
groups would not be able to get in to their neighborhood of choice because
of seniority. The neighborhood change system is as much a chance for
students to move around as it is for Aaron to even out the neighborhood
populations. Gender caps are within each neighborhood as a whole and
not within classes.

Aaron
Gordon (Asst. Director of Campus Life) said that the ideas proposed
for a new system were generated from the CUL report from 2005 and one
of the big differences is that currently requests for neighborhood change
are evaluated on an individual basis and extenuating circumstances can
be taken in to account. Preference is given to students trying to live
together rather than people trying to get nicer housing. Gordon commented
on the group of three rule for random neighborhood swap and said that
three was chosen because it was big enough that you could live with
your friends but still restrictive. Everyone at the meeting agreed that
students would be happier if the number was increased to six.

The
discussion was then directed towards discussing the pull-in option loophole.
CC members found it problematic that students do not have to live together
if they are pulled in. The prevailing attitude is that a student could
get four or five random people from the same neighborhood to sign his
sheet to be pulled in to a neighborhood and then not have to live with
those people. This seemed unfair to those students actually trying to
live with their friends as opposed to trying to use the system to get
better housing.

This
year, about thirty ‘09s and twenty-two ‘10s applied for neighborhood
change. Again, it was mentioned that in the current system priority
is given to people who want to live with their friends over people trying
to angle for specific housing. In the new system, students would only
be penalized if they actually changed neighborhoods. So if a student
or group of students were to apply for neighborhood change and were
not able to switch neighborhoods, they would not be penalized.
For example, if one person has a negative point hit the point hit would
affect the group only if the group picked in to rooms. The penalty is
for room draw, not the neighborhoods re-draw. Being in the same group
only ensures that you pick in at the same time. It doesn’t mean that
you have to end up rooming together.

Jon
Prigoff (Wood Board Rep) asked whether the gender and class caps were
unreasonable. It is conceivable that there could be groups that could
not change because it depends on the population and what people give
up every year.

Rachel
Ko (Wood At-Large) wondered why the penalty was incurred during room
draw when students wanted to change neighborhoods.

Doug
Schiazza (Director of Campus Life) responded that there needed to be
some kind of deterrent built in to the system so that it is not too
easy to change. They do not want to keep changing system each year;
they want to make one change and have a new structure in place.

Straw polls:

In favor of having penalty
be in room draw proves and not in lottery process (10 in favor)

In favor of having it be in
lottery process to get into neighborhood (10 in favor)

Concerts:

College Council
invited several student groups and students to come speak about the
concert scene at Williams. Those invited were: Alicia Barrett (ACE),
Teri Hoffman (ACE), Matt Koven, Williams Concert Committee (Emanuel
Yekutiel), and Jess Gulley (Office of Campus Life).

College Council
provides vast majority of funding for concerts and we wanted to make
sure that we are maximizing enjoyment for students and ensure that students
who are throwing these types of events have resources easily available
to them.

Jess Gulley
from Office of Campus Life works with students on putting together student
activities and events. Students are not allowed to sign contracts, only
agents of the college are allowed to. The Office of Campus Life is trying
to encourage all student planners to work with Jess Gulley (OCL) on
all things pertaining to the creation and signing of contracts. She
is the main liaison for the college if people are going through agents.

One issue
is that students do not understand price ranges of bands or performers
very well. Jess Gulley (OCL) says that Concert Ideas works with colleges
to give them prices. There are many considerations that have to be taken
in to account when asking a band to play at Williams. These considerations
include, but are not limited to: availability, price, willingness to
play at a college, willingness to have bad dressing rooms, etc.

To give students
an idea of price ranges, an act like Third Eye Blind costs $45,000.00,
an act like Matt Pond PA is in the $500 – $2000.00 range, Afroman
and Vanilla Ice are in the in the 7,000-12,000 range, Kings of Leon
are $20,000, Ben Folds is 35,000, Journey costs $100,000 and an act
like Panic at the Disco is $175,000. In addition to all of these prices,
there are many other ‘hidden costs’ that one has to pay when having
an act play a concert. For example, Third Eye Blind costs about $45,000
but requires almost $20,000 in additional ‘hidden costs’ to play.

ACE representatives
Teri Hoffman (Concerts) and Ali Barrett (President of ACE) talked about
what ACE does for concerts on campus. Essentially, ACE throws three
bigger concerts a year, one for each big weekend (Homecoming, Winter
Carnival, Spring Fling). ACE tries to do two smaller concerts for Homecoming
and Winter Carnival so that they can have one big concert for Spring
Fling. ACE spends about $40,000 on the Spring Fling act and then has
two other bands for about $10,000. The primary sources of funding
for ACE concerts are College Council, co-sponsorship, and the neighborhoods.
Jess Gulley (OCL) is the primary resource in the administration. Security
and facilities also help out a lot.

George Carstocea
(Class of 2010, WCFM) represented WCFM, which is first and foremost
a radio station. Being a radio station, they have a lot going on with
labels and get to know a lot about a lot of up and coming bands. Events
are usually for the entire campus, but are not necessarily acts that
everyone has heard of. WCFM spends about $2,500 on concerts from its
budget. It tries to get acts that a lot of people on campus would like,
but these are not necessarily acts that would be seen on MTV. WCFM gets
money from co-sponsorship, campus life grant, and from neighborhoods.
The biggest resource is that they have a network with people in the
music industry with labels and this network can be used to book bigger
acts. George Carstocea (WCFM) suggested that WCFM could use a bit more
coordination and meetings to sort out concerts on campus, especially
since the college resources in terms of venues and people to get involved
are pretty limited.

Emanuel Yekutiel
(Class of 2011 Rep) represented the Williams Concert Committee. The
Williams Concert Committee was formed this semester to bring in smaller
acts for the price range of $500 to $2,000. They have had one concert
already and used co-sponsorship and campus life grant. Their biggest
complaint is that there isn’t one established revenue source to bring
small acts on campus and students or groups have to pull from a lot
of different places on campus to get the money to bring in concerts.

Matt Koven
(Class of 2009) represented a student who just wanted to throw a concert.
He has arranged for Afroman to come play this Saturday, April 11, 2008.
He sees this concert as more of a party than a concert. He got money
to fund the concert from co-sponsorship, campus life, and the neighborhoods.
He found co-sponsorship and campus life easiest to deal with.
He suggested that it would be nice if there were a consolidation of
the system for students to go to in order to throw an event.

Ali Barrett
(ACE, Paresky Programming) represented Paresky Programming, which is
a fund established and endowed by the Class of ’78. This is a small,
separate group that will plan events for Paresky specifically. The money
for Girltalk (playing on April 26) came from Paresky Programming, a
campus life grant, and co-sponsorship.

Jess Gulley
(OCL) wanted to make two points about bringing acts to Williams that
students should always be thinking about:

1. There
are many hidden costs in addition to what it costs to bring an artist
or group to Williams.

2. Forming
committees now (that will be implemented next year) will iron out present
concerns.

Rachel Levy
(Treasurer) commented on CC funding. The General Fund gives a big chunk
of money to ACE and also any group that has been established for two
or more years gets funding. All groups can go to co-sponsorship and
then the amount given is discretionary.

Matt Koven
(Class of 2009) then opened a discussion about funding for events. He
thought that consolidating funds into one general fund would require
reorganizing, but would be beneficial.

George Carstocea
(WCFM) observed that the people planning concerts are spread thin through
a lot of organizations and it seems silly to split them up in to groups
and struggle to put on concerts when you could consolidate it and make
it in to one group and make it less frustrating.

Teri Hoffman
(ACE Concerts) said that each committee or organization had its own
focus and wanted to bring different acts, so combining them wouldn’t
reach a good medium.

Matt
Koven (Class of 2009) had a great experience with Campus Life and sees
them as the source for organizing concerts or parties on campus and
proposed that the fund be consolidated and given to campus life to allocate
rather than having a handful of groups with lots of members spread across
campus each trying to bring musical acts to campus.

Emanuel Yekutiel
(Class of 2011 Rep) motioned extend the meeting ten minutes. Thomas
Rubinsky (Class of 2010 Rep) seconded the motion.

The motion
to extend the meeting passed.

Emanuel then
said that the Williams Concerts Committee is reactionary for students
who want to bring more music to campus to make up for lack of alternatives
to parties. He also stressed the point that Williams needs to have both
large concerts and also smaller concerts as alternatives to social venues.

Ali Barrett
(ACE, Paresky Programming) said that there should be a group where everyone
can come together to bring events to campus with one part being big
concerts and another part that brings in small concerts.

Sarah Moore
(Class of 2009 Rep) commented that it would make sense to have a central
programming board that students can go to who want to bring acts to
campus. This board would have a budget set aside for students who aren’t
members of that board to come to them to get money. This also addresses
the issue of alleviating the struggle that many students and groups
have faced when trying to bring acts to campus.

Peter Nurnberg
(Co-President) ended the meeting by saying that it might not be wise
to give control of a fund for musical acts to one person because then
it might be biased. He thought that any central programming board would
have to be a partnership. He said that the meeting was not going to
come to a productive solution, but the most efficient way to get something
out of the discussion is for groups to get together outside the CC meeting
to coordinate a discussion about a singular group.

    Absentees:
    Two absences in a row or three in a term result in a member’s expulsion,
    unless overridden by the secretary’s discretion or petition to the
    Council.

Not
in Attendance: Toni Kraeva (Spencer Board Rep), Keith Butts (Spencer
At-Large), Sarah Moore (Class of 2009 Rep)

Respectfully
Submitted,

Emily C. Deans

Secretary, College
Council

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