April 16, 2014

Scrolling Headlines:

UMass Dressage Team discusses the lesser-known sport -

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‘The Walking Dead’ finale resurrects a dull season -

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Five places to study at UMass -

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UMass tennis team battles injuries as season comes to an end -

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Chaz Williams to compete in Portsmouth Invitational Tournament -

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Putting the ‘new’ back into ‘news’ -

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Kurt Cobain, remembered 20 years later -

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Feist plays engaging, soulful show at the Calvin Theater -

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UMass poll shows Coakley emerging as a frontrunner in upcoming election -

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Rain washes out baseball, softball -

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

General Education courses should not be required -

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Campus Perspectives: One year anniversary of the Boston Marathon Bombings -

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Boston Marathon: One year later -

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Bostonian spirit prevails -

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Minutewomen continue to show offensive improvement -

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Overalls and whitewashed outfits trend in spring 2014 -

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UMass looks to continue to build confidence against non-conference opponents -

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UMass rowing overcomes food poisoning and earns gold at Knecht Cup -

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Lessons from the Marathon bombings -

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Interim Vice Chancellor Jean Kim looking to claim position permanently

Dr. Jean Kim, the interim vice chancellor for student affairs and campus life at the University of Massachusetts, held an open session on Thursday, Feb. 4 to discuss her future plans for the position with a group of students.

The forum was part of a series of open sessions in which UMass students had the opportunity to meet and converse with the candidates for the vice chancellor position.

Kim took the opportunity to relate her ideas and positions on certain issues on campus, and discussed what changes she would make to the current status quo.

“Our vision for student affairs … [is to develop] a comprehensive living and learning environment on campus,” said Kim. “[This] would contribute to the successful education and transformation of our students so that they can really transform their potential and skill sets to match their highest aspirations.”

Kim is no stranger to the UMass campus. She received a bachelor of arts and a masters degree in sociology as well as a doctor of education degree in counseling psychology from the University. She has over 30 years of previous experience in leading student affairs from Stanford University, the University of Colorado at Boulder and the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, among other accredited institutions.

Kim returned to UMass last July when she began a one-year interim term in the vice chancellor position.

One of the observations she made upon her return was that many of the buildings were the same. She cited the student union, built in 1958, as an example of a structure that was “too old and not sufficient to meet the [growing] student body.”

In addition to academic buildings, Kim would like to see more work done in residential halls. UMass should look into supplying more residential halls for students, she said. Additionally, she would hope to provide a more “progressive” element to residential halls. This would include more suite style and apartment options on campus, so students would have the opportunity to “progress” from dormitory to apartment.

Kim also said one of the biggest changes she would like to see is more attention focused on sophomores.

“[Sophomore year is] a difficult year [and] a different kind of transition,” she said. “There is probably more of a need as educators to connect to students in their sophomore year than we do now.”

Kim said that the transition program would be similar to that currently implemented for first-year students. She said that sophomore year is one in which students tackle questions about the choices they have made so far and their identity as a student.

“If students can successfully get two years under their belt,” she said, “then chances are they’re going to be able to make it and be able to realize and maximize the academic opportunities we have.”

During the open session, Kim fielded questions from students about different issues on campus.

One student asked about the recent reduction of open hours at University Health Services, and what options students have if they get sick in the middle of the night.

 Kim is currently working on a proposal with the director of UHS that would establish a shuttle on campus. This shuttle would provide transportation for sick students, either to UHS or to the hospital, 24 hours a day.

 “We would offer the service for $25 a semester [as an] insurance that you could buy for sick transportation,” said Kim. “With the cost of a taxi, it’s still significantly cheaper than any ambulance run.”

 When asked about the most important approach to her job, Kim referred to a “student-centered approach” in her role as vice chancellor. She spoke of hosting dinners with groups of students at least once every month to hear their impressions of campus and to bring up any possible issues.

 “I see my role as being one of the primary advocates for students,” said Kim. “Part of my job is to be available, to be accessible, to listen and to ask so that I am in touch with … the needs of the students.”

 Sara Cody can be reached at scody@student.umass.edu

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