How Much Can We Know about Our School? I

Sun Hee Leel승인2011.11.01l310호 0면

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▶The proceedings of the Council Meeting had posted on Dankookie and DKU homepage.
   
In comic strips on one Internet portal site, high school students complained about their school. They believed that the owner of their school was the students, but the principal said, "the owner of this school is me and not you." High school students were too panicked and embarrassed. While this example simply depicts a situation in a webtoon, readers likely felt some degree of discomfort arising from the fact that a ridiculous cartoon resembles our reality. Indeed, Dankook University plan for Coordination of Academics is similar to that cartoon. In Dankookie, an online community for Dankookians, official information has already been posted. Yet the school posted official information on the plan much later on the university homepage. So, is it true that Dankookians' access to information is inferior to other universities' students? The DK Herald has taken a look into two problems. First, problems existing in the communication system of the school, and, second, the late dissemination of information on the school homepage.

▶ Lack of opening to the public
There is a point in common between the case of moving the campus to Jukjeon in 2007, and the case of Coordination of Academics. That is, the information came from a source other than school authorities to inform the students step by step. This kind of information sharing is effectively hearsay, which often starts as a rumor, passes the stages of suspicion and assumption, and finally is proved as a fact via one-way reports from university administration. For the case of Coordination of Academics, the rumors have been spread for years, but the authorities denied the rumors until the time right before the facts were announced. However, the rumors became more and more solid and scattered among the students by SMS and SNS communications. At the same time, school authorities never revealed any announcements until they finally held an open seminar stressing the necessity of Coordination of Academics. Not until after many students had posted articles and opinions on Coordination of Academics on numerous portal sites and students of other departments began to noticed those did our university's president finally issue an official statement about this plan on the university homepage. Students were not able to notice what the authorities were doing even though it was related to them, and it was far too difficult to get enough information to satisfy their personal needs even after they became aware of the plan.

▶ Lack of the concern of Dankookians
For a while a number of postings regarding the proceedings of the Council Meeting have been floating around the Web, including information suggesting that the university has approved establishment of an International Hall, enlarging of the ROTC building, and relocation of the bus depot to the main entrance. Those construction projects will all need a great deal of financial support, which will likely be covered by our tuition. This information, therefore, should be announced to students as tuition constitutes a huge percent of the school budget. Then, how many students actually know about these decisions? DKH randomly chose 50 students and asked if they have heard about this news. Among students interviewed, very few of them replied that they had heard of these projects, but they were not able to give any details. Most students interviewed were not aware of the projects. Jeong (freshman, Dept. of Japanese Language and Literature) said, "I feel cheated since they have planned all this big construction without informing the students, even though it is done with our tuition dollars." Also, Cho (freshman, Dept. of Architecture) insisted, "the school authorities should secure the right to know by opening information to the public, not just displaying great, happy news."
Then, is it true that we should just sit quietly and obey without having any way to know what school authorities plan? Absolutely not. As DKH researched, anyone can read the proceedings of the Council Meetings on the school website without logging in. However, despite these simple steps, hits on the page displaying planning meeting proceedings on the website remain below 200. It is definitely a poor record considering the population of DKU students. We are making excuses saying that school authorities did not tell us their decisions, yet we could have noticed what was happening in just a few clicks.


Sun Hee Lee  dkherald@gmail.com
<저작권자 © The Dankook Herald, 무단 전재 및 재배포 금지>

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