Student Senate discusses Comm. redesign plans


Wednesday, Student Senate had two speakers, Kelly Larson, interim head of the communications department, and Darren Fullerton, Vice President of Student Affairs, address the concerns over the communication department restructuring.  

Larson said that the restructuring is a result of Gov. Jay Nixon’s decision in April to have a statewide redesign.

Several Student Senate members were concerned about the redesign and questioned Larson. Senators John Wilkins and Leah Collins both expressed concern over replacing what they considered qualified adjunct staff members with undergraduate students.  

Senator Andrew Hendrick asked for clarification that students would be providing final grades in oral communication, and Larson explained that the lab assistants would only grade individual students’ speeches, and that they would receive 10 weeks of lab training before doing so.

“The main thing of the class is to prepare students for public speaking … your audience is a different kind of audience with a computer screen,” senator Luther Fynkn said. “I think it’s just the wrong class to do this experiment on.” 

“If that was empirically true, our department and our University wouldn’t have offered five Oral Communication classes completely online for the last six or seven semesters that don’t ever meet,” Larson replied. “A quarter of our offering is totally internet.”

About eight senators voiced similar concerns to Larson.