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Accuracy • Independence • Integrity

September 22, 2018   |   Ithaca, NY

Opinion

Letter to the Editor: SGC responds to Ithacan reporting

In the Feb. 1 issue of The Ithacan, there was both a story published and subsequent editorial that took statements made by SGC senators and executive board members out of context, misrepresenting the organization and the conversations had during the January 29th meeting.

In the article titled “SGC discusses student reaction to Collado allegations,” there was a section about Senator-At-Large Seondre Carolina regarding reactions from some individuals in the School of Business. Not only is this quote an inaccurate representation of what Seondre said, but it takes out of context Seondre’s historical background on the SGA vote of no confidence taken in Fall of 2015, in effect changing the sentiment of his statement. Later on, the article dives into conversations about creating spaces for student dialogue around the issues raised in the recent Ithacan article about President Collado’s past. Unlike the article suggests, SGC did not “determine that more student opportunities for dialogue would have bothbenefits and drawbacks.” In the meeting, it was suggested by SGC members that organizing forums to discuss the issues brought forth in the article may not be exclusively ​our role, but also the role of the college administration and other groups on campus. This was a point of discussion upon which no unanimous decision was made by the body, and which is still being deliberated among the SGC executive board.

In the editorial, a statement is made that “a forum for discussion must be provided to students. It is now up to the SGC, Faculty Council, Staff Council and the administration to provide it. This is a necessary step for these governance bodies to serve their constituencies.” The Ithacan is also critical of the SGC e-board’s decision to not release a statement regarding the article about President Collado.

Indeed, it is the SGC’s responsibility to represent and support the student body. As the Ithacan editorial staff has itself expressed, this situation is incredibly nuanced, and because of this, it is impossible to write a blanket statement about how students are feeling. Students are feeling many different things all at once, dealing with the news in different ways, and some are intensely triggered by the details of the story. For SGC to try to speak on behalf of all students would certainly leave a number of students feeling misrepresented. It would be irresponsible for us to attempt to facilitate these conversations, for which we do not have the qualifications or experience. Ithaca College does have the capacity to create these spaces, and SGC would be more than happy to collaborate with them in order to best serve the needs of students and the IC community.

Best,

SGC Executive Board

Editor’s Note: The Ithacan reviewed its recording of the Jan. 29 SGC meeting and determined that Carolina was quoted accurately.