Chalking memo sees mixed reaction among student organizations

Frank Yonkof

A memo from university officials requesting that students not chalk on the giant

brick “K” in the center of Risman Plaza is raising some eyebrows among

student groups.

Chalkers are still allowed to write on the colored bricks surrounding the “K”, but just not the bricks that make the letter itself, said Timeka Rashid, the director of the Center for Student Involvement.

“We’re not trying to limit the students in any way,” Rashid said. “It’s a new addition, and the thought was, just for now, to keep that as clean as possible.”

The memo from the Center for Student Involvement was sent to both advisers and student leaders, but it went unnoticed among many campus groups.

The university is in the process of revising their chalking guidelines to restrict chalking in newly renovated areas. As of now, chalking is allowed on “exposed surfaces where rain can wash the chalk away,” though exceptions include steps, buildings and tables.

“We won’t penalize you,” Rashid said. “We’ll just give you a reminder. We’re not going to take away privileges or anything like that.”

Opinion on the chalking regulations was mixed among many student leaders on campus. While they could understand why the university would want to keep it clean, they still thought the request seemed odd.

“Personally, I don’t see the big deal,” said Trae Ruscin, PRIDE! Kent’s president. “There is plenty of other space. I think we should be able to, but I don’t think it’s a big deal that we’re not.”

With students facing high costs, some thought it was a bad idea for the university to restrict chalking on the renovations that students would ultimately have to pay for.

“Telling us where we can calk is disconcerting for the organizations on campus that have to advertise,” said Bryan Staul, who is a sophomore political science major and political director for Kent State’s College Democrats. “While they have the audacity to throw more and more costs at us, I think it should maybe afford us more liberties to chalk on their ‘K.’”

For sophomore biology major Erin McKay, it seemed odd that the university would restrict chalking on the giant brick letter when tuition is high.

“I think the only person that would care would be someone who was on the top floor of the library,” said McKay. “They used our tuition to pretty much pay for it. If we want to write on it, we can write on it.”

Delta Upsilon President Eddie Walaszewski could see where the university was coming from, after investing $2.5 million into the revamped plaza.

“Those bricks are porous material, and it can stain,” Walaszewski said. “I’m a construction management major, so I can completely understand what they’re saying. I mean, it’s a brand new project.”

Contact Frank Yonkof at [email protected].