As a senior in high school, I was challenged with the choice to attend a plethora of universities. After much thought, I decided that I would attend Huntington University. I chose HU because I felt that I needed a school whose professors invested their time, energy and passion into their students. To be honest, I felt I needed this to be successful. I knew that I could have more social opportunities and possibly more “fun” at Ball State or IU, but this may not lead to a successful college experience. This personal relationship is exactly what I felt when I visited the Huntington University History department.

Overall, my experience at HU has been just what I needed. With three majors and three minors (all while attempting to graduate in four years), it is often tricky to figure out exactly what classes I need to take and how to maneuver everything into my schedule. Tim Smith, Jeffery Webb, Dwight Brautigam, and Kate Brown, professors of history, and Troy Irick, professor of business, have all worked together to fit in the classes I need to graduate on time. These professors, along with many others, have aided me on my journey throughout college. Due to the amount of classes offered at Huntington University, I am able to have three majors and three minors. I am able to have personal relationships with my professors and be successful in what I do. However, I fear this is being threatened.

Recently, the history department was told that Assistant Professor of Political Science Kate Brown had accepted an opportunity at another university. Though I am extremely happy for her, I fear that the administration’s choice to not hire a full-time professor for her vacant spot will be far more severe than they realize, or perhaps, recognize.

While this may only be my opinion, I feel that most students at HU agree that the reason they are here is because of the staff. Actually, it is the professors, not the staff, as much of the staff has very little interaction with the students. I mean honestly, we have seven deans. If any student can name them all, I would be happy to buy them a coffee.

This leads into a financial issue of why the university has seven deans along with their secretaries? I question — do most universities our size have this many? Another financial issue and question is that Campus Ministries and the admissions office played musical offices for a semester before a massive remodeling happened. How much money did that cost? How many professors could have been paid with that money, or perhaps given the raises they are due? The saddest part about this is the space that used to hold admissions now sits empty and locked, inaccessible to the students. I understand things like the greenhouse were donated to the university, however, what about the staff member they wish to hire to manage the greenhouse? Why can’t the university get donations for funds for raises for professors?

When junior Malachi Wise and I met with administration, we were told that three years ago when Brown was hired, the position she would fill was absolutely necessary to be filled due to the amount of students that were in the ever growing history department, and the amount of students that need to take history classes. Now I ask — why is her position not necessary when I have been told the department is growing?

This choice to not fill her role makes me question how money is being spent at the university. In the same meeting, we were told that the university’s budget is a “complexity” — too complex to explain to the paying students. I think administration should share this information with the students that are paying to attend the university. The inability of the administration to meet with students in a reasonable time also fuels my frustration. Twice, with two different administrators, I was told that it will be more than 10 days before the administrator has an opportunity to meet with a me. This makes me feel as though I am a mere number to the university, or perhaps just a check. The lack of communication between administration and paying students at the university is upsetting and frustrating to me. After all, if a company didn’t report their earnings with their shareholders and the holders lost money and or quality, wouldn’t they feel shorted?

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