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All College Day 2009 Comments

Interpreting the Purpose of All College Day

I think this is a great way to encourage diversity and community.  It gives the image that everyone is accepting and all views and ideas are heard.

I like the thought of hearing all voices as an administrative initiative---but in practice so many voices are silenced on this campus.  Success is determined by student culture, not by slogans.  Still, hooray for hearing all voices!!!

I know this is a good topic, but we need to promote it more.  Not that many people know what it actually means.

I like the communal atmosphere of All College Day.  The Hip Hop table is next to knitting.  Bringing people together!

Thank you for working to open up a space for listening.  The tabling is (or feels) especially lively.

I love it, but I'm skeptical sometimes of how effective such efforts are.  All we can do is try and I always enjoy reading the murals.  Thank you!

I don't know what All College Day actually is, and I've talked to a lot of people who are confused.  Please make it more clear what the point of this is.  I would love to have all voices heard, but is this the proper forum?  I find it interesting that two years ago someone wrote on the mural "symbols and over-used Gandhi quotations mean nothing without action."  The next year, the topic seemed to be a response to this:  Be The Change, but Hearing All Voices seems to be a step backwards!  We need to return to acting on all voices and then changing based upon them.  Why is ARAMARK still contracted for food?  Why is coke still on campus?

It's a great idea, been coming since 2003!  Keep up the good work!

Reflections on the Theme

I think Vassar does a good job of Hearing All Voices, but it's good to have this as a theme so that we can continue to improve.

This is a great topic.  The idea that we need to include the opinions, perspectives of our community, all students, etc. is contemporary and appropriate in this globalized inter-connected world.

I think it's an important topic and one that doesn't get enough thought at Vassar.  We're supposedly an open and diverse community, but a lot of times people's voices are smothered.

It seems sort of harmless enough, though I guess it's also vague and ambiguous---What are "all voices" anyway?

I think the topic "Hearing All Voices" is Vassar's attempt to make it feel like a diverse and inclusive atmosphere, but in reality, not so much.

I think the theme is a great one and I love the idea.  I think it can be a little superficial in discussion instead of addressing real conflict and issues.  There's an overwhelming care for political correctness, but less honesty.

Swell!  All = open-mindedness.  Voice = means of communication.  Hearing - nice.  Listen....maybe listening implies more intentional, but I suppose for consciousness sake (and flow) "hearing" is better.

Hearing All Voices means creating an open, welcoming, and warm space for all people.  It's a phrase we should hear more at Vassar---since we often pretend to be more open minded than we truly are.  Hearing all voices also needs an equal opportunity space so that all people have the ability to have their voices heard.  Hearing all voices is a goal and a project we need to constantly work towards.

I am just hoping that it doesn't just end at "hearing" but instead continues on to understanding and respecting all voices.

This sounds idealistic, what about silence, or expressions that aren't spoken?

Hearing and Listening in Practice

I think hearing all voices means learning from people that are different than you and growing from that interaction.

I think it's incredibly important that we as a human race evolve as many different varieties of people develop throughout the years.  It's necessary to continue with the times as people identify themselves in increasingly diverse ways.  If we cannot move forward with people then we cannot move forward at all.

I think it's a great idea, but I'm not sure how many people really want to hear all voices.

An important, misunderstood concept.  People often have selective hearing in the world.  They only want to hear voices/words that make them feel good.  We need to hear the good and bad in order to see and understand the whole of our community and humanity.  "Hearing" isn't the best word.  Listen is better.  Listen means we process what is being said.  We need to listen and think about what we hear, not just wait our turn to talk.  There are many beautiful voices in the world to hear.

Just because you hear them doesn't mean you're listening.

It is important to keep away from "otherizing" people.  This can only be accomplished by entering into active dialogue with them.

Let us humble ourselves so that we may actually be able to hear.  No hiding behind big words, terms, and intellectual walls.  Real Talk.

I wish everyone communicated better at Vassar.  It's just so hard to get everyone on the same page.  We could cut down on so much redundancy.

Who is responsible for hearing all voices?  We create the environment.  We choose to silence or listen.

To me hearing all voices is a statement about tolerance.  At Vassar we all strive to be open to all ideas and opinions in so long as they do not cause harm to another in the community.  This idea of tolerance is an active process, not an ever-existing state.  Each person in the community must attempt to learn from one another and share their ideas. 

I believe that it's important---essential---to listen to a variety of perspectives, whether social, political, or personal.  In an insular environment such as Vassar, it's too easy to limit oneself to only agreeable opinions.

Only by bringing a variety of different voices and perspectives to a community can that community thrive.  Giving voice to the voiceless increases our awareness of needs surrounding us.  This is how we can have a positive impact and increase respect and tolerance.

In order to hear anyone, you have to stop talking.

Voices Heard and Unheard at Vassar

It's an okay topic, but I think that here at Vassar there is too much emphasis on the minority.  As a result, as a white, straight, female I feel like I don't matter half the time.  IT'S RIDICULOUS!

Never more important than during a financial crisis.  Vassar must hear all voices this year.  If we fail to include each voice, we will make choices that are inimical to the future of the institution.

All voices should be able to be expressed without being pressured, suppressed, or hindered in any way by opposition of authority figures.  Influence of opinions should only be done internal to that person who wishes to change or reform their views after taking into account the opinions of others.

I think it's important because it brings more experiences and perspectives into discussions or debates.  I also feel that when there are an overwhelming amount of people from a certain group, it makes it hard for others who don't belong to that certain group to speak up.

More respect for employees.

Everyone has a voice.  We all do, regardless of how much we talk, regardless of how much we listen.  No one is ever voiceless---let's make the effort to incorporate each and every voice into everything.  Not just listen, but hear and understand.

Vassar does a very poor job of hearing all voices because it is not diverse enough.  The only voices that are heard are the LGBTQ voices, but the world doesn't depend or revolve on sexuality only.  What about RACE and CLASS???  We need to be more multicultural if we really want to achieve that goal of diversity and being an inclusive environment where everyone can thrive both academically and socially and be HAPPY!

As a minority student (International, black, and female) I never feel that my voice is ever heard in this predominately white campus.  When it is heard, it is always perceived as strange, foreign, angry, sad, or bitter.  Although Vassar has provided services to cater to my needs, I still feel that Vassar has a while to go.  But I am glad that services like the ALANA Center, International Office, and even Strong House, helped to raise my voice from a shy whisper to a strong voice.

I wish that All College Day would put more effort into hearing all voices that are usually silenced.  Doesn't it feel like it's always the same people speaking?

We need to be more conscious of the voices we honor at this college.  Although we often preach to include all voices, I am surprised by the number of men at this college in leadership positions compared to women.

I feel like sometimes at a liberal place such as Vassar, only liberal voices are heard.  If we are to hear all voices then we should be open to hear voices that we may not want to hear.

Something the college needs to strive for.  In no way does the administration hear all students' voices!  Treat us like adults and not kids!

Moving Forward and Suggestions for All College Day

I always feel like the theme is more inclusive than the day ever is.

I really think this is such an important event for our school because it really gives students an opportunity to express themselves.  Hopefully, this day can lead to actual dialogue and REAL change.

There should be more dialogue at Vassar, and a more stronger unified student voice.

I'd love to see more of the community outside of Vassar here, because as a college the work we do off campus is important.

Inspiring.  A great way to see the Vassar Community getting together.  It would be cool if this could be more visible to a larger part of the Poughkeepsie community.

Hearing All Voices is an excellent idea for a theme, but I think that the student population should be given a better idea of what All College Day is.  I know many juniors and seniors that still don't know what it is!  Advertise what happens during the day (tabling, performances, etc.) otherwise, Great Day!

It feels off to have this celebration occur on Ash Wednesday.  Please think about this for the future.  Thank you.

My thoughts are that I don't know what All College Day is about.  It would have been good to have information about the origin of the event.