announces new fundraising effort at Antioch
Last month during
a convocation, Antioch College President Joan Straumanis emphasized the
same points that officials of the North Central Association (NCA), an
accreditation group, had highlighted after touring the campus
as problems that Antioch must deal with in the near future: minimal institutional
research, self-governance within Antioch University, a shortage of resources
and proper facilities and low enrollment.
I actually breathed a sigh of relief because they didnt mention
what we all truly take pride in at Antioch, our academics, said
Straumanis. But Straumanis said she wasnt surprised by what NCA
officials did mention. All roads lead to enrollment management,
she said, referring to Antiochs low enrollment, a problem the college
has experienced for the last two decades.
Speaking before a crowd of 200 on Oct. 23, also known as Community
Day or the middle of the term at Antioch, Straumanis also discussed
some of the structural problems at the college. A cleaning and renovation
project at the Spalt Building, which contains offices and student housing,
has taken longer than originally anticipated. In past years, mold and
sanitation problems in Spalt and Presidents Hall have caused health problems
for many students.
Straumanis said that one of the towers on Main Building had recently undergone
emergency construction. The tower located directly above her office had
been tipping for a few months due to its age. I couldnt stand
the symbolism of a tower crashing down under my administration,
Straumanis also presented a fundraising plan that involves more than just
raising money. Even very rich people dont feel so rich these
days, Straumanis said. In place of monetary donations, Straumanis
proposed the creation of the Committee of 150, which would
consist of getting people to offer Antioch services if they could not
make monetary donations.
The committee is named in honor of the colleges upcoming sesquicentennial,
In addition, a public relations group has already drafted a report on
how Antioch could improve its PR and a designer has created new signs
for many of the buildings around campus. Straumanis urged anyone with
something to contribute to step forward.
While the convocation address is usually presented only once after the
arrival of a new president, Straumanis said that when she gave her original
speech last February many of the students now on campus and some staff
members were away on co-op or on sabbatical. There should be a time
people can hear from the president, Straumanis said.