With the “Save HOCO” event planned for this weekend, Western’s Homecoming date swap to mid-October once again became the hot topic on Tuesday's Board of Governors meeting.
The board confirmed that Western has no plans to restore a late-September Homecoming next year. It will continue to be on a date “later in the fall” to keep reducing the number of students celebrating.
Board member Jane Toswell broached the discussion, pointing to a report in The Gazette detailing the USC’s plans for events on UC Hill as part of “first Homecoming.”
“Are we accidentally having two Homecomings this fall, or are we in the process of fixing it for next year?” Toswell asked.
Provost Janice Deakin said “we’re working with our eyes open,” and that she’s currently aware of eight keggers advertised on social media that are planned for this weekend.
“We expect there to be homecoming-like activities by the students this weekend,” Deakin said. “We hope that what happens on Broughdale will be smaller this year than it was last year … None of this is optimal.”
In response to the keggers, Deakin said associate vice-president student experience Jana Luker and University Students' Council representatives will be visiting Broughdale Ave. tonight to discourage students from partying this weekend.
Toswell said she teaches a first-year class, and she's unhappy that they'll be encouraged to take time away from school to celebrate Homecoming now, and again at the end of the October.
"My problem was more in the short-term, I don't like seeing that level of upheaval around campus and among undergraduate students," Toswell said. "While it's certainly not an ideal situation this year, next year they'll put more solutions in place, I hope."
For now, undergraduate student representative Jonathan Green said talking to students on Broughdale is a positive step.
"If the admin and USC reps can help students understand the risks they're assuming for themselves and others, then I think that’s a good thing."
During the meeting, the board also passed a motion to change the monetary thresholds attached to the capital projects that need board approval. Now, individual capital projects only require board approval if they're above $7.5 million — previously it was $5 million. The appointment of architects and consultants is also up from $750,000 to above $1 million for board approval.
The chair of the board, Hanny Hassan, welcomed six new members to the group: Catherine Karakatsanis, Kibret Mequanint, Pam Bishop and Carol Stephenson, including two new student representatives: Matt Helfand, an undergraduate student representative, and Nicolette Noonan, the graduate students’ representative.