Park students returning from spring break have been noticing the four large flat screen televisions above their heads in the building’s main hallway, a discovery that has been met with mixed reactions.
Diane Gayeski, Park School Interim Dean, said the Park School paid around $10,000, including installation, for the four screens in the second floor hallway. She said the LCD screens will allow the Park School to display the school’s achievements and keep information updated in a more professional manner.
“One of the things that we want to be able to highlight is student accomplishments and work, faculty accomplishments and alumni accomplishments,” Gayeski said. “We’ve done that in a number of ways with the old fashioned bulletin boards on the second floor [but] they look bad and they just don’t give a really professional look to the school.”
Director of technical operations for the Park school David Priester said the screens will be controlled remotely to avoid having them run unnecessarily.
“We’ll have the ability to schedule them to automatically turn off at whatever the appropriate times are,” Priester said.
Placing additional television screens in the lobby has been part of the plan since the lobby was remodeled in 2006 Gayeski said.
“We had been setting aside reserves in our capital budget for the last couple of years,” Gayeski said. “It just took us awhile to be able to keep the reserves together to finally get enough and get a good price on the screens to be able to move ahead on them.”
Melissa Gattine, special programs and public relations coordinator, will update the screens as new information becomes available.
“The nice thing about it is it’s flexible,” Gattine said. “The idea is we would have an alumni one, a faculty one, a student work one, awards and honors, internships and events. [Those] would be kind of the major ones that would be frequently seen. So we can change them as needed if we have something great going on.”
Some students are happy with the new screens. Freshman television-radio major Shimeng Gao said they are a good way to keep people informed.
“It is really convenient for the students and the visitors to look up and see things going on in Ithaca,” Gao said.
Other students disagree. Brian Rosenberg, a sophomore IMC major, feels the screens are a waste.
“It’s unnecessary [and] kind of a waste of our funds at Park,” Rosenberg said. “I think in the long run they’re going to turn out to be more of a hindrance than a help.”
Gattine said the screens are a way for students to see what their colleagues and professors are doing.
“There’s a lot of wonderful work that we do here and there’s a lot of kudos from our student media to our individual students to our faculty,” Gattine said. “People are always doing really amazing things, and it’s hard to know about it. [So our students] have a chance to look down the hall and at least see things are happening and kind of just celebrate what we’re good at.”