With the selection of the new Lewis & Clark President, the ASLC Cabinet would like to reiterate our role on campus and comment on the Presidential Search Committee’s decision:
ASLC’s purpose is to act as the liaison between students and the administration. With that purpose in mind, our mission is to do everything in our power to create the safest, most comfortable learning and living environment possible for all students at L&C. As such, we are unable to ignore the criticism from the PSU student body and subsequently the Lewis & Clark student body. With that being said, ASLC would like to communicate our expectations to both our incoming president and to our student body. We understand that President Wiewel’s actions as PSU’s president may be concerning for students in our community.
As students ourselves, we agree that having armed campus police officers doesn’t make our students– particularly students of color– feel safer on campus. We will not tolerate the addition of armed campus public safety officers to our campus. We acknowledge that having a consulting business run from the President’s house is a cause of concern for many. ASLC further understands the frustration that PSU students expressed when administrative officials act indifferent to challenges students face. These worries are valid. ASLC will ensure that students’ concerns are heard by members of the administration and other necessary parties.
We must also acknowledge the efforts of the college’s Presidential Search Committee in selecting Wiewel as the new president. In his previous position at PSU, Wiewel created task forces and dedicated spaces to help underrepresented groups succeed. From this commitment to diversity, Wim tripled Latinx enrollment and increased students of color enrollment by 30%. As students of color and representatives of students of color, we dearly hope that Wim will be able to recreate these results at Lewis & Clark.
The main thing that gives me confidence in Wim is his definition of his job. During the “Meet the Leading Candidate for the Next President of Lewis & Clark” event, Wim said that he understood that the Board of Trustees were looking for a fundraiser, but he believes that the best way to entice potential donors is to really understand the college and its students. Emphasizing his focus on openness and commitment to communication, Wiewel stated in the same meeting that he plans to hold open office hours at LC, similar to the system in place at PSU.
Like everyone, including those in the Lewis & Clark community, Wim Wiewel is a multifaceted individual. He values a diverse academic environment and knows how to expand enrollment. He is an immigrant and thinks with a global perspective. He is outdoorsy and very environmentally conscious. At Lewis & Clark, ASLC will make sure that students’ opinions are heard in the President’s Office and Board of Trustees meetings. When you tell ASLC what you care about and want to see changed, we are empowered to do more to further our mission of a safe and comfortable school. It is our hope that Wiewel may continue in the successes he brought to PSU and that the student body may welcome him with the open-mindedness and respect with which we treat one another.
With that said, the Associated Students of Lewis & Clark are excited to welcome Wim Wiewel to the Lewis & Clark community. We look forward to working with President Wiewel as he gets to know the LC student body and the standards to which we hold our leaders. We hope for a smooth transition and look forward to Wim’s service for the community. I’m sure he will enjoy getting to know our welcoming and passionate student body.
We look forward to seeing you all in the Fall,
The ASLC 2017-2018 Cabinet
Marissa Valdez, President
Zack Johnson, Vice President
William Witmer, Treasurer
Natalie Souders, Chief Justice
Violet Betters, Community Service and Relations Coordinator
Alden Chatfield, Student Organizations Coordinator
Nicolette Sauramba, Diversity Committee Chair
Jen Bennett, Auditor
Jasper Edwards, Chief of Staff
Sophia Canon, Student Academic Affairs Board Chair
Nora Maybury, Director of Elections