Letters to the editor

Study abroad ease

As I was reading Erin Dumbacher’s “Academics abroad should match those at home” (Feb. 2, p. 4), I noticed that the writer would make someone think that it is absolutely impossible to find a suitable study abroad program, when in fact the process is really not that difficult.

I am currently in Beijing through the Associated Colleges of China Program out of Hamilton College, a much more intense program than any of the GW-approved ones in the same city. Though I did have to fill out a little extra paperwork, I had no problem getting my program approved by the office. They only want to make sure that the program you wish to attend is reputable and that your motives for attending are academic.

As long as a student can spare roughly 15 minutes of time on a few pieces of paper, finding one’s ideal study abroad program, even if not University-sanctioned, is not difficult at all.

-Nathan G. Holdstein, junior

Gelman noise issues

As student liaison for the Gelman Library System, I wanted to respond to the Dec. 8 “Thumbs Down to Club Gelman” (p. 4) in The Hatchet as well as the subsequent response by alumnus Michael Berson from Jan. 17 (“Letters to the editor,” p. 5).

Noise complaints are the No. 1 issue raised by students using the library. Many have asked for tighter staff control of this situation. While Gelman staff members certainly support quiet study space in the library, it is very difficult to police student behavior.

College and graduate students are assumed to be adults responsible for their own actions and fully able to respect the posted policies of the study areas. As such, we have found that noise issues are best addressed at the peer-to-peer level. If a group is particularly noisy and has not responded to requests by other students to be quiet, staff members will then intervene if asked, but using staff to consistently police the halls of the library would take time away from their ability to assist student patrons with academic needs.

We have taken steps to increase awareness of the quiet spaces of the library by posting additional signage during finals period, and are currently working on clearer signage to identify which rooms are quiet spaces and which rooms are for group discussion. A summary of library study areas can also be found on a new series of Gelman Web pages that can be found here: www.gwu.edu/gelman/library/liaison/.

Any students interested in discussing this topic in an open forum are invited to attend the next Gelman Student Advisory Board Meeting, where library noise will be the main point of discussion. Come voice your concerns and discuss options with senior library administrators and other students. The next meeting date will be advertised in the library, but if you would like to be notified when this date is set, please send an e-mail to liaison@gwu.edu.

-Amber G. Marcellino, graduate student, student liaison, Gelman Library System

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