Our view: Know your school

DKS Editors

Without a doubt, the most important relationship by far at the university level lies between the students and faculty. Student-faculty relationships often extend well beyond just a lecture and a Scantron test. In fact, students who dedicate one-on-one time with their professors and find common ground with them outside the classroom are likely to learn much more than the students who can’t even name their professor.

However, as the giant chain of command climbs higher up the ladder, the average student’s knowledge of university officials wanes. Right now, can your department head? Quick, what about the dean of your college? What does the vice president of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion do every day? Who’s the VP of Research?

The Stater has found most students are simply unaware of the basics of how Kent State operates, from the names and titles of the people in charge to how their powers can truly change their college experience. This ignorance is often written off as not a big deal. Students who are forced through the agony of Campus Knowledge Tests shrug at the weird names and obnoxiously long, vague titles.

But how can you oppose a tuition hike if you don’t even know to whom to direct your complaints? You have an inherent right to public documents such as contracts, payroll information and board minutes.

What if you wanted to request these public records? You wouldn’t ask the Office of the Provost. If a problem in your residence hall isn’t being addressed by anyone in Residence Services, who would you go to next? Don’t go to Gregg Floyd — Residence Services Director Betsy Joseph doesn’t report to him.

We’re not saying students should be able to name the favorite foods of every vice president or whether outgoing Provost Frank wears boxers or briefs. We just think students should know the basics of their institution. Perhaps the First-Year Experience classes could step up and teach incoming freshmen the ins and outs of how this place works.

The above editorial is the consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board.