Christina Kopka, Student Government president, gave the State of the Campus Address on Wednesday, Feb. 20 at the weekly SG meeting.
Kopka opened with a clear intention for her speech, “to clarify a vision for the future so that the legacy of our work will continue on for years to come,” and continued by listing several achievements the College has earned in
The College has been recognized by the U.S. News World Report as the number one public college in the northern region and Kiplinger’s once again ranked the College as the state’s Best Value Public College. The College has also been recognized for the students’ dedication to service by the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor roll.
“These accolades should come as no surprise to us, as it is the hard work of our students, faculty and staff as well as the strength of our community that has earned us such recognition,” Kopka said.
Kopka noted new staff members who were welcomed to the College community in the past year. The Cabinet of Student Advisors and the Community Engagement Internship program were implemented under the leadership of Vicky Triponey, interim vice president for Student Affairs.
With the direction of Susan Bakewell-Sachs, the interim vice president for Academic Affairs and provost, the College has “moved forward on the strategic planning process … This planning is critical to the future of our institution,” Kopka said.
Jackie Taylor will be joining the College as the new provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, having previously served as the associate vice president for Academic Affairs and the associate dean of Graduate Studies in liberal arts and sciences at DePaul University in Chicago.
Kopka updated SG on the advancements in construction projects around campus.
Campus Town is expected to be completed by the end of summer 2014, while Cromwell Hall will be reopened for students this year. Kopka stated that Centennial Hall is also in need of renovations. The Building Our Futures Bond referendum granted approximately $22-26 million to the College for academic building construction.
“TCNJ will be utilizing these funds to replace Holman Hall with a state of the art STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) facility, which will give TCNJ students the competitive edge they need to excel in the constantly changing world of science and technology.”
Kopka additionally addressed issues at the College regarding space for the growing student body. She said resolving this problem is a priority for SG.
“As a student body, we have outgrown our Student Center, the lounge spaces in our residences halls and the Recreation Center, and no student should have to forgo an opportunity to plan an event or skip a workout due to a lack of the right space,” Kopka said.
Here for Home, the College’s effort to aid in Hurricane Sandy relief, raised over $5,000; over 220 volunteers dedicated 1,300 hours in service and donated 4,500 pounds of food to Sandy victims, Kopka announced.
“We will continue to serve our neighbors at the shore with bus trips to the areas still recovering and we stand in support of all those who are rebuilding their lives,” Kopka said.
Kopka addressed the success of the individual SG committees. The Committee on Advancement has worked toward improving the relationship between the College and Ewing community.
Adam Bonnano joined SG this semester as their vice president for Academic Affairs and is working on promoting the use of on-campus resources through the Norm Campaign.
The Committee for Governmental Affairs worked on the Election Awareness initiative and the Building Our Futures referendum in the fall.
“We must continually commit ourselves to facing the challenges that lie ahead with action and ardency, never forgetting the purpose of our work. In this way, we will trans