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SGC discusses Terrace Dining Hall Elevator and other renovations to Ithaca College campus

Tim+Downs%2C+chief+financial+officer+and+vice+president+for+Finance+and+Administration%2C+met+with+SGC+to+discuss+upgrades+to+the+Ithaca+College+campus%2C+specifically+the+Terraces+Dining+Hall+and+Terrace+roadway.+
Mei Dennison
Tim Downs, chief financial officer and vice president for Finance and Administration, met with SGC to discuss upgrades to the Ithaca College campus, specifically the Terraces Dining Hall and Terrace roadway.

The Ithaca College Student Governance Council met Feb. 19 to hear from Tim Downs, chief financial officer and vice president for Finance and Administration. SGC also provided feedback on ways to improve lighting around campus and how to make the Terrace Dining Hall and dorm rooms more accessible. The council also held confirmations for the senate position of the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance and the senator at large position. 

Downs presented an overview of Finance and Administration oversight at the college, student and faculty assistance at the Coddington Road Community Center and ongoing communication with the Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit (TCAT) on arrangements that will be made for student IDs to work with the new fare collection system once the TCAT system is fixed.

Downs said that while the college is in discussion with the TCAT system, it will be necessary that the new system tracks how many students make use of it, to gauge how rider usage compares when it is free versus when it is not. 

“[The college and the TCAT will use] a system that’s going to help us determine how much [rider usage] is because I will tell you, it doesn’t get better than free,” Downs said. “If people aren’t using it now, they’re not going to use it when it goes back to cost economy.”

Downs then transitioned into upcoming decisions that the Division of Finance and Administration will make. Downs began with investments into the campus, like renovations that were done on the entryway to Dillingham Center and the exterior of Campus Center. 

Downs said that while there is enough space to house students on campus, the administration is looking at how they can enhance the efficiency of the current space to make it better.  

“We always want to make sure we’re looking at what size our institution is and what we need to do so from a space perspective … we have the space we need,” Downs said. “But what we really need to focus on is the renewal of the space. How do we modernize it? How do we update it?” 

Downs also spoke about the Terrace Elevator project in progress and explained how that would be applied to the Terrace Dining Hall. 

“After Terrace One is [renovated] the Terrace Dining Hall [is next],” Downs said. “We will look to build [an elevator] outside of the building, which will allow all floors [of the dining hall] to be accessible by the elevators,” Downs said. “It will connect [from] the Baker Walkway.”

After sharing the plans for the elevator in the Terrace Dining Hall, Downs asked for feedback on places around campus that need better lighting and ideas on how to make the Terrace roadway more accessible. 

Sophomore Lili Chalfant, Park School of Communications Senator, said that the lack of accessibility for the Terrace roadway is a hindrance for many students, including herself. 

“I would say that that area is both inaccessible and inconvenient,” Chalfant said. “When people have leg injuries, it is quite a lot, especially in the wintertime when there’s ice on the roads. I live in [Terrace Three]. I’ll park in towers and to climb all the way up is not fun. I think [the area is dangerous for pedestrians] because we lack good lighting, signs and rules.” 

Sophomore Dante Conde, Class of 2026 senator, said that closing off the roadway to cars, and only allowing pedestrians at night, provides a compromise for safety and any traffic the roadway might see. 

“Would it be possible to close [the roadway] at certain times of the day or have it open until a certain period of the day?” Conde said. “After that time, it would be closed to only pedestrians, so therefore you can still have car traffic.”

The council then held confirmations for sophomore Aoife Hartigan, first-year student Keene Owen for the senator-at-large positions and first-year Evan Wasserman for the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance senator position.

Hartigan said she has experience with advocating for her peers and that the senator-at-large position would allow her to properly address issues that the student body has. 

“I have always been a good spokesperson for others,” Hartigan said. “Working as a senator would allow me to be that person to my constituents. I believe the most important part about being a leader is not having all the right ideas, but knowing the right idea when you hear by listening to the struggles in the complaints of the students”

Hartigan continued to explain her history with leadership positions and said that as the treasurer for IC Premium Blend, she is already working closely with the SGC.

Owen, who was also being confirmed for the senator-at-large position, said that as a Theater Production and Design major, he would focus on advocating for his constituents in the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance.

Wasserman said he has experience with leadership positions and that would help inform his choices as the School of Music, Theater, and Dance senator.

The council then declared an executive session. After the executive session, the council had senator reports from Eva Horst, class of 2027 senator, and senior Utkarsh Maini, School of Business senator. 

Horst said she is starting her community outreach and will be working closely with First-year First-generation senator LaRon Pigford on the Students of Color Coalition Bill. Maini said he will be meeting with Michael Johnson-Cramer, dean of the School of Business, to discuss updating majors and addressing issues that students in the School of Business at the college have been facing.

The meeting ended with officer reports. Sophomore Rishabh Sen, vice president of campus affairs, spoke about the importance of having students on the search committees for the new director of the BIPOC Unity Center, reaccreditation of the college and the director of Religious and Spiritual Life.

“If you’re trying to get involved in [one of these committees,] you can literally slap [them] on your CV as soon as you join,” Sen said. “It’s really important that they get student input on all of their different student searching committees.”

The SGC is the sole representative body for the Ithaca College student community. The SGC can be contacted at [email protected].

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Jacquelyn Reaves
Jacquelyn Reaves, Newsletter Editor
Mei Dennison, Videographer
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